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Topics in Transportation Economics

Paper Session

Friday, Jan. 4, 2019 12:30 PM - 2:15 PM

Hilton Atlanta, 303
Hosted By: Transportation and Public Utilities Group & American Economic Association
  • Chair: Richard Fowles, University of Utah

The Sources of the Wider Economic Benefits of Air

David Gillen
University of British Columbia
Peter Forsyth
Monash University


This paper considers the economic benefits of air transportation.

Regulation by Benchmarks

Wesley W. Wilson
University of Oregon
Frank A. Wolak
Stanford University


Railroads haul thousands of different commodities between thousands of different origins and destinations. The regulatory agency was mandated to have a costing model in place that allocated costs to specific movements and established thresholds which, if established, gave the regulatory agency jurisdiction over rates. In our previous work, Wilson and Wolak (2016), we provide both theoretical and empirical criticisms of the costing methodology and concluded it should be abandoned. In this paper, we offer a benchmark approach to identifying shipments that may warrant further investigation for whether rates are reasonable or not.

Electric vehicles and residential energy consumption: An indirect rebound effect

Erik T. Verhoef
University of Amsterdam
Wolfgang Habla
Center for European Economic Research & University of Mannheim
Efthymia Kyriakopoulou
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences


Urban air pollution from commuting is a major issue for both developed and developing countries. This paper analyses the internal structure and the size of a city where commuters can choose between two alternative vehicles: the electric or the conventional ones. This choice defines two types of commuters: the polluters and the non-polluters. We show that the location decisions of each type affect the aggregate pollution levels and the size of the city. We study site-specific policies that will lead to a wider use of electric vehicles and improve welfare.

Allocative and Productive Efficiency in Rail: A Stochastic Frontier Approach

James H. Peoples
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
John Bitzan
North Dakota State University


This paper examines railroad efficiency in terms of allocative and productive efficiency. It provides a critical review of the literature and then develops and applies the stochastic frontier model of Khumbacher to more recent data.
Jeffrey Cohen
University of Connecticut
Patrick McCarthy
Georgia Institute of Technology
Kenneth Buttton
George Mason University
Richard Fowles
University of Utah
JEL Classifications
  • L9 - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities
  • R4 - Transportation Economics