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International Conference on Complex Systems (ICCS2006)

Identifying challenges for sustained adoption of alternative fuel vehicles and infrastructure

Jeroen Struben

     Full text: Not available
     Last modified: March 28, 2006

This paper develops and discusses a dynamic, behavioral model with explicit spatial structure to explore the co-evolutionary dynamics between infrastructure supply and vehicle demand. The process, usually described as the "chicken-egg" problem for alternative fuel vehicles (AFV), is fundamental to the emergence of a self-sustaining alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) market, but not well understood. The paper explores in depth the dynamics resulting from local demand-supply interactions with strategically locating fuel-station entrants. We examine dynamics under heterogeneous socio-economic/demographic conditions. The research reveals the formation of urban adoption clusters as an important mechanism for early market formation. However, while locally speeding diffusion, these same micro-mechanisms can obstruct the emergence of a large sustaining market. Several other feedbacks that significantly influence dynamics, from both supply and demand behaviors are discussed. This spatial behavioral dynamic model (SBDM) can find applications in comparing targeted entrance strategies for alternative fuel in transportation. In the light of policy analysis, the role of other powerful positive feedbacks arising from scale and scope economies, R&D, learning by doing, driver experience, and word of mouth is discussed.

For an overview research: http://web.mit.edu/jjrs/www/Current%20Research.htm
For a related paper: http://ssrn.com/abstract=881800

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