Robust congestion pricing under boundedly rational user equilibrium

Yingyan Lou, Yafeng Yin, Siriphong Lawphongpanich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

131 Scopus citations


This paper investigates congestion pricing strategies in static networks with boundedly rational route choice behavior. Under such behavior, users do not necessarily choose a shortest or cheapest route when doing so does not reduce their travel times by a significant amount. A general path-based definition and a more restrictive link-based representation of boundedly rational user equilibrium (BRUE) are presented. The set of BRUE flow distributions is generally non-convex and non-empty. The problems of finding best- and worst-case BRUE flow distributions are formulated and solved as mathematical programs with complementarity constraints. Because alternative tolled BRUE flow distributions exist, our congestion pricing models seek a toll vector or pattern that minimizes the system travel time of the worst-case tolled BRUE flow distribution. As formulated, the models are generalized semi-infinite min-max problems and we propose a heuristic algorithm based on penalization and a cutting-plane scheme to solve them. Numerical examples are presented to illustrate key concepts and results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-28
Number of pages14
JournalTransportation Research Part B: Methodological
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Boundedly rational user equilibrium
  • Congestion pricing
  • Network modeling
  • Robust optimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation


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