Function, symbolism or society? Exploring consumer interest in electric and shared mobility

McBain, S.M., Axsen, J., & Wilson, C. ORCID: (2023). Function, symbolism or society? Exploring consumer interest in electric and shared mobility. Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment 118 e103675. 10.1016/j.trd.2023.103675.

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The adoption of transportation innovations can be driven by a variety of motivations, including functional, symbolic and societal considerations. We compare these motives regarding consumer choice of electric and shared mobility, using survey data from a sample of Canadian adopters and non-adopters of electric vehicles, car-sharing and shared ride-hailing (n = 529). Our framework includes four perception categories: private-functional (e.g., costs and convenience), private-symbolic (e.g., making good impressions), societal-functional (e.g., protecting the environment) and societal-symbolic (e.g., spreading inspiration). We apply two data analytic approaches, finding that positive private-functional perceptions are consistently associated with adoption across all three innovations, especially convenience and compatibility. Other patterns vary by innovation. Most notably, positive private-symbolic considerations are significantly associated with electric vehicle adoption. Results suggest that while functional considerations are important, symbolic motives can also be important but with more nuance.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Car-sharing; Consumer adoption; Electric vehicle; Innovation; Ride-hailing; Shared mobility
Research Programs: Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Sustainable Service Systems (S3)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions (TISS)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 12 Apr 2023 09:22
Last Modified: 12 Apr 2023 09:22

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