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Workshop on

Open Source Tools for Activity-Based Travel Behaviour Modeling


Activity-based approaches are increasingly being adopted in metropolitan areas around the world for travel demand forecasting. Activity-based travel demand models forecast activity-travel patterns at the level of the individual traveler within a microsimulation framework and thus provide a rich set of disaggregate information for transportation planning, policy development, and decision-making. Over the past several years, a number of new tools and modeling methods have been developed to make the estimation and application of activity-based microsimulation models of travel demand a reality in real-world metropolitan planning contexts. The field of activity-based travel demand modeling is beginning to leverage a number of open source tools to generate a synthetic population for a region, estimate econometric choice models, and simulate activity-travel patterns at various spatial and temporal scales.

In this context, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay located in Mumbai, India, is pleased to conduct a workshop on "Open Source Tools for Activity-Based Travel Behaviour Modeling" in collaboration with faculty from Arizona State University (ASU). The workshop will cover open source econometric model estimation tools that can be used for traditional trip- based as well as newer activity-based travel models. The workshop will also include detailed instruction in the use of a special open-source software package that is capable of generating a synthetic population for activity-based travel demand forecasting.

About the Workshop

The workshop will include two modules, with a combination of instruction and software demonstration. All of the workshop materials will be made available to workshop attendees.

Module 1: Econometric Choice Modeling in R

This segment of the workshop will focus on estimation and application of econometric choice models in the open source software computing/programming language R. The models covered will range from general econometric choice models such as the multinomial logit (MNL) model to advanced models such as the multiple discrete continuous extreme value (MDCEV) model. The module will include examples of choice model applications. The session will be divided into the following segments:

  • An introduction to R programming language
  • General econometric choice models in R
  • Estimation and application of the MDCEV model in R
  • Demonstration of the vehicle fleet composition software package

Module 2: Synthetic Population Generation Using PopGen

This part of the workshop will cover the core concepts and methodologies underlying PopGen, and the application of PopGen for synthetic population generation in the context of advanced activity-based microsimulation models. The session will be divided into the following segments:
  • Background on synthetic population generation
  • Concepts and methods for population synthesis
  • PopGen Software Demo: Setting up a project; Generating synthetic population; Result extraction and analysis
  • Base year demographic models and demographic evolution models

Who should attend

The workshop will introduce attendees to a number of econometric modeling methods as well as cutting edge research in the activity-based modeling arena with a specific focus on synthetic population generation. This course is designed for researchers/practitioners interested in travel behavior analysis and activity-based microsimulation modeling. The participants are expected to have a basic knowledge of travel modeling and mathematical/statistical/econometric methods.


The workshop will be conducted by Professor Ram Pendyala and Dr. Venu Garikapati of the Mobility Analytics Research Group (MARG,, in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment at Arizona State University. Professor K.V. Krishna Rao will deliver a special presentation on activity-based model development and application in the Indian context. The instructors have extensive experience in activity-based microsimulation modeling, application of advanced econometric modeling methods, and activity-travel behavior analysis. MARG has developed a number of state-of- the-art open source software modeling tools that have been widely adopted in practice around the world.

Workshop Logistics

The workshop is being hosted by IIT-Bombay as part of the 12 th International Conference on Transportation Planning & Implementation Methodologies for Developing Countries (TPMDC). The workshop will be held from 2:00 pm - 5:30 pm on December 21, 2016 (the last day of the conference) at the conference venue on the campus of IIT-Bombay in Powai, Mumbai, India. Participants must register separately for the workshop. Workshop registration fees are as shown below and can be paid together with the main conference registration fee. Note: Only TPMDC conference registrants are allowed to register for and participate in this workshop.

Category From India From Foreign Country
Regular Delegates INR 1000 USD 50
Students INR 500 USD 25

Contact Information

Dr. Gopal Patil

Ph: +91-22- 2576-7308

Dr. Venu M. Garikapati

Ph: +1-480- 522-8067