TITLE: Travel Behavior and generative pre-trained transformer methods
Background: IATBR NEWS has proudly celebrated the second issue published in February 2023 (please read the issue here if you have not). Keeping the original mission of this newsletter, it will bring discussions around another futuristic vision and mindboggling idea to the attention of travel modellers around the world. The third issue is aimed to be published in August 2023 with a focus on another emerging domain, AI and generative pre-trained transformer (GPT) methods. In addition, following the first episode of interviews with reputable scholars in the area of travel behaviour, the next issue will cover an interview with Prof David Hensher.
Topic: In this issue, we invite researchers, scientists, and practitioners to describe, criticise, support, or challenge ideas around the travel behaviour of an era when AI dominantly influence, and shapes the decisions of travellers. Borrowing concepts from the first issue on metaverses and the virtual world and the second issue on travelling to space, AI appears to be responsible for changes pictured by the authors of our articles.
I asked ChatGPT how it can change the travel behaviour of people and here are its suggestions:
Providing Information: ChatGPT can provide users with information on various sustainable transportation options such as public transit, biking, and walking. It can also provide information on the environmental impact of different travel options, helping users make more informed decisions. I think here ChatGPT is over-assessing its capacity to play a positive role.
Personalized Recommendations: By analyzing user data, ChatGPT can provide personalized recommendations for transportation options based on a user's location, travel needs, and personal preferences. This can encourage users to try new and sustainable transportation options. This suggestion can be overwhelming with privacy and ethical concern.
Real-time Traffic Updates: ChatGPT can provide real-time updates on traffic conditions, helping users avoid congested routes and save time. This can encourage users to use public transit or other sustainable modes of transportation that may be faster and more reliable. Once again, I believe ChatpGPT overestimated its capacity to act within ethics limits.
I then asked ChatGPT how it can negatively affect the future of travel behaviour, where four areas were suggested.
Biased Recommendations: If the data used to train ChatGPT is biased, it could potentially provide biased recommendations for transportation options, leading to disparities in travel behaviour and limiting the potential for behaviour change.
Lack of Accessibility: If ChatGPT is only accessible to certain communities or demographics, it could limit the potential for behaviour change among those who do not have access to the technology.
Privacy Concerns: If ChatGPT collects and stores user data without appropriate privacy safeguards, it could lead to privacy violations and undermine trust in the technology.
Dependence on Technology: If people become too reliant on ChatGPT or other AI systems for travel recommendations and decision-making, it could limit their ability to make independent and informed choices about their travel behaviour.
This issue invites authors to submit their short articles (maximum 600 words) where one picture/diagram must be included as a schematic abstract. The articles are expected to have only one author (the article will be published with a photo of the author, see previous issues as examples). The authors are invited to reveal a novel view of the travel behaviour paradigm shift shaped by ChatGPT and alike. All aspects related to mobility, non-motorized, urban, regional, rural, and passenger are welcome to be discussed as long as a link to AI can be shed light upon.
Quotes from ChatGPT must be explicitly cited and limited to a maximum of fewer than 60 words.
 Cited papers are included as footnotes not included in the word count
Key Dates: The deadline for submission of the articles is the 15th of June 2023. The articles are expected to be published in the third newsletter of IATBR in August 2023.
Contact: Submissions and queries should be emailed to Taha Rashidi (firstname.lastname@example.org)
 P.S. The total number of words in the article above is 654 words.