Impact of COVID-19 on Travel Behavior and Shared Mobility Systems

Principal Investigator Nikhil Menon
Final Report (DOI) Download final report
TRID View TRID entry
Policy Brief Download policy brief


In the past several months, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has gone on to become a truly catastrophic global phenomenon that has had impacts not just on the health and well-being of individuals but also had far reaching impacts across different industries and sectors. Transportation, like its peers, is also a severely impacted component from the spread of the virus, and the ensuing social distance norms that have been put into place by governments at different levels across the world. The virus has had an impact on travel behavior, mobility, air quality, environment, as well as on logistics and supply chains on a global basis. There is an urgent need to investigate the impacts of this “new normal” on our transportation systems and to gain a better understanding on strategies that can be employed to continue to achieve positive and healthful outcomes at a system level.

In order to accomplish some of these pressing needs, the research team proposes a study will investigate the impact of COVID-19 on travel behavior, activity engagement, and shared mobility in order to better understand the role played by information and communication technologies (ICT) in the changing landscape of travel. Not a lot of past research has been done in this area owing to the relative newness of this global phenomenon. The proposed study will be the first-of-its-kind funded by the National Center for Transit Research (NCTR) with a goal to better understand the impacts of the global pandemic on current and future travel behavior. Results from this effort will provide valuable insights on the impact of the pandemic on travel behavior, shared mobility systems, and the role of ICT in this changing landscape of travel. The insights gained from this study will form an interesting baseline for planning and policy-level interventions to counter the new normal.

Grant DTRT13-G-UTC56
USF # 79063-22
Funding Amount $26,888
Project Start Date 04/22/20
Expected Date of Completion 09/30/20
Sponsor Organization Center for Urban Transportation Research- National Center for Transit Research
Sponsor Organization Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology- University Transportation Centers Program -Department of Transportation