A Structural Estimation of the Disutility of Commuting

Author Name KONDO Keisuke (Senior Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. April 2020 20-E-031
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This study evaluates the disutility of long-distance commuting by structurally estimating a random utility model of commuting choice. Using estimated structural parameters for commuting preferences and considering the factors that produce heterogeneity across workers, the study quantifies the extent to which workers incur disutility from commuting under a counterfactual scenario in which they commute the same distance before and after marriage. Using inter-municipal commuting flow data in Japan, the counterfactual simulations uncover a significant gender gap in the disutility of commuting, particularly because having children after marriage greatly increases the disutility of commuting for female but not for male workers. Residential relocation plays a role in mitigating the disutility of commuting for female workers, implying that the additional disutility that arises after marriage can be offset through endogenous residential location choice.

This is the English version of the Japanese Discussion Paper (19-J-014) with some additional information and changes.