Operational route choice methodologies for practical applications

  • Evanthia Kazagli
  • Michel Bierlaire
  • Matthieu de Lapparent


This paper focuses on the application of tractable route choice models and presents a set of methods for deriving relevant disaggregate and aggregate route choice indicators, namely link and route flows. Tractability is achieved at the disaggregate level by the recursive logit model and at the aggregate level by the mental representation item (\(\mathrm {MRI}\)) approach. These two approaches are analyzed here, and extensions of the \({\mathrm {MRI}}\) approach are presented. The analysis elaborates on the features of each model and allows to draw insights into the use of a specific model, depending on the needs of the application and the data availability. The performance of the two models is tested on real data. The results demonstrate the validity of the \({\mathrm {MRI}}\) model that is intended for aggregate analysis.


Route choice models Route choice indicators Applications Aggregate analysis 



This research is supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation Grant \(\#200021-146621\) “Capturing latent concepts with non invasive sensing systems”. We thank Gunnar Flötteröd for his suggestions and fruitful discussions, and Mai Tien and Emma Frejinger for providing the code for, and insights into, the recursive logit model.

Author Contributions

EK: Literature search and review, manuscript writing, content planning; MB: Manuscript editing, content planning; M.L.: Manuscript editing.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Transport and Mobility Laboratory, School of Architecture, Civil and Environmental Engineering (ENAC)École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)LausanneSwitzerland
  2. 2.School of Business and Engineering Vaud (HEIG-VD)University of Applied Sciences and Arts Western Switzerland (HES-SO)Yverdon-les-BainsSwitzerland

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