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Professor Hai Yang: Some Emerging Research Issues in Ride-sourcing Markets

Publish Date: 2018/12/26 10:39:13    Hits:

On the morning of December 24, Professor Hai Yang from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology was invited to visit our college and gave an academic report entitled “Some emerging research issues in ride-sourcing markets” in the new main building A716.More than 40 faculties and students attended the lecture.

Professor Hai Yang introduced some specific research issues around the theme of online car market, including dynamic or surge pricing, drivers’ zonal choice behavior and guidance and reposition for empty vehicles, dynamic origin-destination passenger demand forecasting, incentive mechanism design for on-demand ride-sharing, electric vehicle driving cycle and behavior, passenger and driver mutual rating mechanism and so on.

In this report,Professor Hai Yang mainly focused on the study of “Modelling and optimizing on-demand matching in a ride-sourcing market”. With the availability of location information on drivers and passengers, ride-sourcing platforms are now able to provide more efficient online matching than the physical searching and meeting in traditional taxi market. The matching time interval (a time interval over which waiting passengers and idle drivers are accumulated and then peer-to-peer matching is executed) and maximum matching radius (or maximum allowable pickup distance, within which matching or pairing between waiting passengers and idle drivers can be done) are two key control variables that the platform can employ to optimize the system performance in an online matching system. By appropriately extending matching time interval, the platform can accumulate more waiting (or unserved) passengers and idle drivers and thus match the two pools with shorter expected pickup distance. However, if the matching time interval is excessively long, some passengers may become impatient, and may even cancel their requests. Meanwhile, a short maximum matching radius can reduce expected pickup distance but may decrease the matching rate as well. Therefore, it is important to optimize the matching time interval and maximum matching radius to enhance system efficiency in terms of passenger waiting time, vehicle utilization and matching rate. This study proposes a model to delineate the online matching process in a ride-sourcing market. The model is then used to examine the impact of the matching time interval and maximum matching radius on system performance and to jointly optimize the two variables under different levels of supply and demand. Numerical experiments are conducted to demonstrate how the proposed modelling and optimization approaches can improve real-time matching processes of ride-sourcing platforms.

Professor Hai Yang’s logical and shallow report has benefitedall audiences. Professor Yang had a thorough discussion with thefaculties and students on the related issues of the report. The meeting was successfully concluded in a warm atmosphere.

Prof. Hai Yang is currently a Chair Professor at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He is internationally known as an active scholar in the field of transportation, with more than 240 papers published in SCI/SSCI indexed journals and a SCI H-index citation rate of 51. Most of his publications appeared in leading international journals, such as Transportation Research, Transportation Science and Operations Research. Prof. Yang received a number of national and international awards, including National Natural Science Award bestowed by the State Council of PR China (2011). He was appointed as Chang Jiang Chair Professor of the Ministry of Education of PR China; Prof. Yang is now the Editor-in-Chief of Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, a top journal in the field of transportation.