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A Simultaneous Equations Model of Employee Attitudes to a Staggered Work Hours Demonstration Project

Abstract

Increasing emphasis is being placed on transportation demand management strategies as U.S. metropolitan areas seek solutions to urban congestion problems. These strategies focus on reducing peak-period travel demand by promoting actions such as ridesharing and transit use, flexible work hours programs, and working at home (telecommuting). Success of these strategies depends on the willingness of employees to adopt them. Thus attitudes and perceptions of these strategies are important indicators of their viability as transportation policy alternatives. This paper presents an analysis of employee attitudes towards one transportation demand management strategy: staggered work hours. The program was implemented as a demonstration project in downtown Honolulu, Hawaii. 

The research problem here is one of establishing relationships between employee attitudes toward the program and their actual experiences. Because the attitudinal data involve ordinal and discrete choice variables, the analysis requires use of causal models that can incorporate endogenous variables that are not normally distributed. The approach is to specify a simultaneous system of dichotomous and ordered-response probit models and to make use of maximum and generalized least-squares methods in a multistage estimation procedure. The model is used to test relationships between participation in the Staggered Work Hours Program, travel experience during the Program, and attitudes toward participation in future programs.

The remainder of the paper is organized as follows: Section 2 provides a description of the Demonstration Project. Section 3 presents the research approach and methodology. Data is described in Section 4, analysis and results in Section 5, and conclusions in Section 6.

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