Life events and travel behaviour: Exploring the interrelationship using UK household longitudinal study data

Clark, B., Chatterjee, K., Melia, S., Knies, G. and Laurie, H. (2014) Life events and travel behaviour: Exploring the interrelationship using UK household longitudinal study data. Transportation Research Record, 2413. pp. 54-64. ISSN 0361-1981 Available from:

Clark et al TRR 2014 accepted.pdf

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Recent research has indicated that changes in travel behaviour are more likely at the time of major life events. However, there remains much to learn about the extent to which different life events trigger behavioural change and the conditions under which life events are more likely to trigger change. The UK Household Longitudinal Study (UKHLS) offers a previously unavailable opportunity to investigate this for a large, representative sample of the UK population. We have also linked UKHLS data to local spatial data, drawn from the census and other sources, to elucidate the effect of the spatial context on changes to travel behaviour in association with life events. Findings from an exploratory analysis of UKHLS waves 1 and 2 data are presented first. Transition tables demonstrate a strong association between changes in car ownership/commute mode and the following life events: employment changes, residential relocations, retirement, child birth and changes in household structure. Results are then shown of logit models which relate the probability of an increase and decrease in the number of cars owned to the occurrence of life events, controlling for individual and household characteristics and spatial context. These show, for example, that urbanizing and ruralizing moves have contrasting effects on travel behaviour and having a new child in itself is not a significant influence on car ownership in the short term.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: life event, travel behaviour, behaviour change, panel study
Faculty/Department: Faculty of Environment and Technology > Department of Geography and Environmental Management
Depositing User: Dr B. Clark
Date Deposited: 22 Sep 2014 14:37
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2017 20:52


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