Collaborations and Partnerships between Public Transportation and Transportation Network Companies (TNCs)

During the past decade, a variety of technology-enabled mobility options have emerged that have gained considerable visibility, popularity, and notoriety. Private firms, known as Transportation Network Companies (TNCs), connect people seeking trips to drivers who are often (but not always) using their personal (non-commercial) vehicle. These connections are made through computer and smart phone mobile applications (apps) that allow passengers to easily request and pay for their trips; to monitor vehicle location, arrival time, and trip progress; and to identify their driver. GPS technology allows drivers and passengers to locate one another and enables fares to be automatically determined for each trip. The term “ridesourcing” (i.e., outsourcing rides) has been coined to describe this mobility option. Research thus far on TNCs suggests that technology-enabled mobility options can complement, supplement, or sometimes substitute for public transportation. Recently, public transportation agencies in the United States have begun considering, exploring, and, in some cases, initiating collaborations and partnerships with TNCs. For the purposes of this research, collaborations are defined as relationships that are not highly formalized or structured, where entities work toward achieving success in their shared goals. Partnerships, on the other hand, build on collaboration and are more formalized, sometimes including legal agreements. Research is needed on existing and potential collaborations and partnerships between public transportation and TNCs to increase understanding and support effective decisionmaking in this emerging area. The objective of this research is to prepare an up-to-date guide on collaborations and partnerships between public transportation and TNCs in all stages of development and realization. This includes initiatives that are underway, in development, under consideration, disbanded, or potential. The research should consider the opportunities and challenges, including the benefits and risks, of these collaborations and partnerships.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $100000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project J-11, Task 26

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Transit Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Transit Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Schwager, Dianne

  • Performing Organizations:

    Nelson/Nygaard Consulting Associates

  • Principal Investigators:

    Curtis, Terra

  • Start Date: 20170928
  • Expected Completion Date: 20180927
  • Actual Completion Date: 0
  • Source Data: RiP Project 41549

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01632433
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project J-11, Task 26
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Apr 20 2017 1:01AM