A survey on demand-responsive public bus systems

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

mode - bus, mode - demand responsive transit, planning - surveys, ridership - demand, planning - methods


Demand-responsive public bus systems, On-demand transportation, Flexible public transport, Taxonomy, Classification


When demand for transportation is low or highly variable, traditional public bus services tend to lose their efficiency and typically frustrate (potential) passengers. In the literature, a large number of demand-responsive systems, that promise improved flexibility, have therefore been developed. At present, however, a comprehensive survey of these systems is lacking. In this paper, we fill this gap by presenting a unifying framework that classifies all demand-responsive public bus systems. The classification is mainly based on three degrees of responsiveness: dynamic online, dynamic offline, and static. For each system we discuss the specific optimization problem modeled, whether realistic data is considered, and the size of the instances used for testing. Where possible, we try to draw conclusions on the current state of the literature and try to identify potential avenues for future research. Different tables are included to structure and summarize the information of all papers.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


Transportation Research Part C Home Page: