Recent working paper
- Schoner, J., G. Lindsey and D. Levinson (2015) Is Bicycling Contagious? Effects of Bike Share Stations and Activity on System Membership and General Population Cycling (working paper)
This paper presents new evidence about the role of bike share systems in travel behavior using a diffusion of innovation framework. We hypothesize that bike share systems have a contagion or spillover effect on (𝐻1) propensity to start using the system and (𝐻2) propensity to bicycle among the general population. We test the first hypothesis by modeling membership growth as a function of both system expansion and the existing membership base. We test the second hypothesis by using bike share activity levels near one’s home in a model of household-level bicycle participation and trip frequency. Our study shows mixed results. Bike share membership growth appears to be driven, in a small part, by a contagion effect of existing bike share members nearby. However, we did not identify a significant relationship between proximity to bike share and cycling participation or frequency among the general population. The findings hold implications for marketing, infrastructure investments, and future research about bike share innovation diffusion and spillover effects.
KEYWORDS: Bike Share; Diffusion of Innovation; Travel Behavior