This report presents a discussion of the influence that internet-enabled communication technologies are having, and might have, on patterns of transport demand in New Zealand. First, a range of mechanisms by which the internet could reasonably be expected to influence transport demand are described. In-depth interviews with decision makers at public and private organisations in New Zealand highlighted two main areas where change is being driven by internet communication technologies: direct effects on transport demand; and the changing nature of the physical workplace, which has outcomes for transport demand as people change where, when and how they work.
There is a dearth of literature that quantifies a causal association between use of the internet and transport demand. Additionally, suitable datasets to measure the influence at city, regional or national levels do not currently exist in New Zealand. Much investment and change in use of internet communications technologies is taking place at an organisational scale. Though, the relationship between investment in technology and transport outcomes is confounded by factors of behavioural preferences, societal and organisational norms, and internal policies. The experience of these organisations identifies changes we can expect for both transport demand and working behaviours in an increasingly digital society.
Keywords: business, demand, future, internet, remote, transport