Co-utility pp 117-138 | Cite as

Co-utile Ridesharing

  • David SánchezEmail author
  • Sergio Martínez
  • Josep Domingo-Ferrer
Part of the Studies in Systems, Decision and Control book series (SSDC, volume 110)


Ridesharing has the potential to bring a wealth of benefits both to the actors directly involved in the shared trip (e.g., shared travel costs or access to high-occupancy vehicle facilities) and also to the society in general (e.g., reduced traffic congestion and CO\(_{2}\) emissions). However, even though ridesharing is based on a win-win collaboration and modern mobile communication technologies have significantly eased discovering and managing ride matches, the adoption of ridesharing has paradoxically decreased during the last years. In this respect, recent studies have highlighted how privacy concerns and the lack of trust among peers are crucial issues that hamper the success of ridesharing. In this chapter, we tackle both of these issues by means of (i) a fully decentralized P2P ridesharing management network that avoids centralized ride-matching agencies (and hence private data compilation by such agencies); and (ii) an also decentralized reputation management protocol that brings trust among peers, even when they have not previously interacted. Our proposal rests on co-utility, which ensures that rational (even purely selfish) peers will find no incentives to deviate from the prescribed protocols. We have tested our system by using data gathered from real mobility traces of cabs in the San Francisco Bay area, and according to several metrics that quantify the degree of adoption of ridesharing and the ensuing individual and societal benefits.



Funding by the Templeton World Charity Foundation (grant TWCF0095/AB60 “CO-UTILITY”) is gratefully acknowledged. Also, partial support to this work has been received from the Government of Catalonia (ICREA Acadèmia Prize to J. Domingo-Ferrer and grant 2014 SGR 537), the Spanish Government (projects TIN2014-57364-C2-1-R “SmartGlacis”, TIN2015-70054-REDC and TIN2016-80250-R “Sec-MCloud”) and the European Commission (projects H2020-644024 “CLARUS” and H2020-700540 “CANVAS”). The authors are with the UNESCO Chair in Data Privacy, but the views in this work are the authors’ own and are not necessarily shared by UNESCO or any of the funding bodies.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Sánchez
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sergio Martínez
    • 1
  • Josep Domingo-Ferrer
    • 1
  1. 1.UNESCO Chair in Data Privacy, Department of Computer Science and MathematicsUniversitat Rovira i VirgiliTarragona, CataloniaSpain

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