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ITLS researchers receive international recognition in the USA

16 Jan 2014

Research by the University of Sydney Business School's Dr Andrew Collins, which has the potential to benefit the travelling public worldwide, has been recognised with a highly prestigious international award.

The Eric Pas Dissertation Prize is awarded annually by the International Association for Travel Behaviour Research (IATBR) to the best doctoral dissertation globally in the area of travel behaviour research.

The IATBR represents "scholars, researchers, practitioners, consultants, and public agency professionals dedicated to the advancement of travel behaviour research".

Dr Collins, who is now a lecturer in transport and logistics management with the Business School's Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies (ITLS), conducted the research as a doctoral student under the supervision of Professors David Hensher and John Rose.

His thesis, titled 'Attribute non-attendance in discrete choice models: measurement of bias, and a model for the inference of both non-attendance and taste heterogeneity', presented a new and more accurate system for determining transport choices made by travellers.

"This is a prestigious award in the field and is highly competitive," said Professor Hensher who is the Founding Director of the ITLS.

Dr Collins' award was announced at the recent IATBR meeting in Washington DC. At the same time, the association gave an honourable mention to Dr Matthew Beck for his doctoral thesis titled 'Development of a behavioural system of stated choice models: modelling behavioural, pricing and technological opportunities to reduce automobile energy levels'.

Dr Beck is now a senior lecturer in infrastructure management at the ITLS.

"We are all very proud of the success of our doctoral students, both of whom are now full-time academics in ITLS," said Professor Hensher.

The Eric Pas Dissertation Prize is named in honour of a distinguished American travel behaviour researcher who passed away in November 1997.

Other past and present staff and affiliates of the ITLS to receive the prize / honourable mention include Sean Puckett (Economic behaviour of interdependent road freight stakeholders under variable road user charges: advanced stated choice analysis); Stephane Hess (Advanced discrete choice models with applications to transport demand); and Michiel Bliemer (Analytical dynamic traffic assignment with interacting user-classes).

David Hensher also received the 2009 IATBR Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition for his long-standing and exceptional contribution to IATBR as well as to the wider travel behaviour community.