My doctoral study explores issues related to wheelchair accessibility in transport service facilitated through Uber and Lyft in Washington, DC. I use a mixed methods case study design to investigate the topic in a manner that engages the main stakeholders in the ride-hailing industry. My research begins with a survey of wheelchair users who live in DC. It then hopes to sequentially engage Uber and Lyft drivers, Uber and Lyft companies, policymakers and regulators through a set of qualitative interviews. Having an understanding of core issues experienced by each of the stakeholders facilitates a holistic knowledge to help address these issues. Currently, there is a serious lack of academic literature on the topic, in fact, in general on the topic of ride-hailing phenomenon in relation to travel behaviors and user characteristics. One of my aims with this study is to contribute to closing this knowledge gap.
At the moment, my focus is refining my survey and planning strategies of recruiting survey participants. I will have a lot to share in the coming few weeks. Stay tuned.