What impressions do users have after a ride in an automated shuttle? An interview study

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Abstract

In the future, automated shuttles may provide on-demand transport and serve as feeders to public transport systems. However, automated shuttles will only become widely used if they are accepted by the public. This paper presents results of an interview study with 30 users of an automated shuttle on the EUREF (Europäisches Energieforum) campus in Berlin-Schöneberg to obtain in-depth understanding of the acceptance of automated shuttles as feeders to public transport systems. From the interviews, we identified 340 quotes, which were classified into six categories: (1) expectations about the capabilities of the automated shuttle (10% of quotes), (2) evaluation of the shuttle performance (10%), (3) service quality (34%), (4) risk and benefit perception (15%), (5) travel purpose (25%), and (6) trust (6%). The quotes indicated that respondents had idealized expectations about the technological capabilities of the automated shuttle, which may have been fostered by the media. Respondents were positive about the idea of using automated shuttles as feeders to public transport systems but did not believe that the shuttle will allow them to engage in cognitively demanding activities such as working. Furthermore, 20% of respondents indicated to prefer supervision of shuttles via an external control room or steward on board over unsupervised automation. In conclusion, even though the current automated shuttle did not live up to the respondents’ expectations, respondents still perceived automated shuttles as a viable option for feeders to public transport systems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)252-269
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
Volume63
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Keywords

  • Acceptance
  • Automated public transport
  • Automated shuttles
  • Expectations
  • Interviews

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