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SWUTC Ph.D. Candidate Assistantship Project Description

Mechanism Design for Ridesharing Services

University: Texas A&M University

Principal Investigator:
Wei Lu
Zachry Department of Civil Engineering
(979) 845-5674

Faculty Supervisor:
Luca Quadrifoglio
Zachry Department of Civil Engineering
(979) 458-4171

Funding Source: USDOT Funds

Total Project Cost: $36,279

Project Number: 600451-00034

Date Started: 9/1/13

Estimated Completion Date: 12/31/14

Project Summary

Project Abstract:
E ffective usage of ridesharing can potentially increase occupancy rates.  There are some existing efforts in ridesharing systems. However, these systems are not convenient enough to compete with private cars as potential passengers are having diffiiculty in getting a shared ride.  The reason is that these systems fail to provide incentives to attract more drivers to participate. Our proposed solution is to introduce auction-based mechanism into the ridesharing system to boost the probability of successful matches between drivers and passengers. The successful practice of mechanism design has been seen in the online advertisement industry and other multi-billion businesses.

Project Objectives:
The goal of this research is to make ridesharing an economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable transportation solution.

Task Descriptions:

Task 1Literature Review

Task 2Computationally Efficient VCG-based Payment Mechanisms Design

Task 3Budget-balancing and Optimal Mechanism Design

Task 4Build Simulation Models

Task 5 – Document the Dissertation and Final Report