Teleworking - Possible Interaction with Travel Patterns

Teleworking - Possible Interaction with Travel Patterns


R Hjorthol, Å Nossum, Institute of Transport Economics, NO


The paper will present results from the Norwegian national personal travel survey and an additional Internet survey on use of information and communication technology (ICT). We will focus on the relation between daily travel patterns and telework.


Information? and communication technology (ICT) is becoming more and more important in people?s everyday life. In a few years access to the Internet in the population has increased considerable, from 52 percent in 2000 to 74 percent in 2005. The access to and use of ICT has created new conditions for organizing activities in time and space. Sequence of actions can be broken up, be fragmented in both time and space. Activities like work, shopping, entertainment etc can be carried out from private homes, and activities that previous were restricted by opening hours, can be done 24 hours a day, if desired.
The main objective of this paper is to examine the relation between daily travel pattern and telework. In the discussion about interaction between travel and use of ICT four possible effects has been suggested: Substitution or replacement - new technology (ICT) replace old (transport). Modification ? new technology is used to conduct or change planned activities. Generation ? new technology means more information, new acquaintances and possibilities that induce more travel. Addition ? new technology comes in addition to old.
The results in this paper are based on Norwegian national passenger travel survey from 2005 (NPTS 2005) and a connected survey carried out on the Internet. About 2700 persons have answered questions about their use of ICT at home. Approximately 900 of these respondents answered questions about doing work at home, teleworking. The respondents were recruited through the NPTS 2005. During the interview (by telephone) in NPTS people 18 years or older with access to Internet at home were asked to participate in this Internet survey. Data from NPTS 2005 and the Internet surveys were merged.
A little less than half of the employees (48 percent) have the possibility to work at home, and the majority of them occasionally do so. In total 40 percent of the employees say they work at home on irregular basis. Only 9 percent have a written agreement concerning work at home with the employer. Nearly 60 percent say that they do not have a special agreement with the employer.
The possibility to work at home is most prevalent among men, employees over 35 years, people living in the larger cities, those with high occupational status, high income and education. This is in accordance with international research.
The results show that 40 percent of the employees work whole days or parts of a day home during a month. Of this group 34 percent work whole days at home and 66 percent say they work part of a day at home. More men than women work at home, both whole days and part of the days. Reasons related to work are the most important reasons to telework. The transport related reasons are mentioned by less than 10 percent. When comparing travel activity and transport mode for those who work at home with those who don?t, only minor differences are found. Contrary to conventional wisdom those who work at home travel longer distance by car in total than those who don?t. The reason for this might be that the most usual way to work at home is part of a day, not a whole day. A combination of working both at the workplace and at home the same day do not reduce travelling the commuting is still taking place. The possibility to work at home first of all increases the flexibility both in time and space. The results from this survey indicate a modification of travel patterns rather than a substitution of trips.


Association for European Transport