, Volume 33, Issue 5, pp 481–496 | Cite as

The applicability of non-cooperative game theory in transport analysis

  • Yaron HollanderEmail author
  • Joseph N. Prashker
Research Article


Various models that incorporate concepts from Non-Cooperative Game Theory (NCGT) are described in the transport literature. Game Theory provides powerful tools for analysing transport systems, but these tools have some drawbacks that should be recognised. In the current paper we review games that describe transport problems and discuss them within a uniform context. Although the paper does not introduce new tools, it presents insights concerning the relations between transport models and games. We divide existing games into groups and show that some common features characterise multiple games. We distinguish between games that make a conceptual contribution and games that are suitable for application. Compact or symmetric game structures make remarkable observations but often do not support actual decision-making. Less aesthetic formats, most of which are Stackelberg games between authorities and travellers, are stronger as instruments that assist in determining real-life policies; these formulations can be treated by practitioners as mathematical programs with equilibrium constraints and not as games.


Behavioural models Mathematical models Transport models Transport policy Non-Cooperative game Theory 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Transport StudiesUniversity of LeedsLeedsUK
  2. 2.Faculty of Civil and Environmental EngineeringTechnion – Israel Institute of TechnologyTechnion CityIsrael

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