Modelling determinants of walking and cycling adoption: A stage-of-change perspective

Alec Biehl, Alireza Ermagun, Amanda Stathopoulos*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Shifting travel away from cars and towards more active modes has proven a formidable policy challenge. This study aims to uncover the determinants of walking and cycling adoption by applying a stage-of-change framework. Drawing on the Transtheoretical Model, this framework models the adoption of active modes as a series of stages from pre-contemplation to maintenance. Ordinal logit models applied to US data (n = 914) illustrate the importance of both observable demographic-personal and perceptual-attitudinal variables for determining stage-of-change membership. Comparing walking and cycling, the model reveals both shared variables (vehicle ownership, self-identity) and differing factors (gender, environmental spatial ability) distinguishing among adoption stages, which has significant implications for transport policy. Results indicate that a model combining both demographic-personal and perceptual-attitudinal factors has the best fit and validity, suggesting that travel behavior interventions would benefit from multivariate segmentation methods that consider an array of individual and group characteristics. This research also gives evidence of different determinants motivating change processes for cycling versus walking. Taken together, results suggest a need for tailored policy interventions to promote behavioural adoption based not merely on the specific mode selection, but also on the usage stage under consideration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)452-470
Number of pages19
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
StatePublished - Oct 2018


  • Active transportation adoption
  • Factor analysis
  • Ordinal logistic regression
  • Stages of change
  • Transtheoretical model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Transportation
  • Applied Psychology


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