Spontaneous symmetry breaking in ride-sharing adoption dynamics

Research output: Contribution to journalResearch articleContributedpeer-review



Symmetry breaking ubiquitously occurs across complex systems, from phase transition in statistical physics to self-organized lane formation in pedestrian dynamics. Here, we uncover spontaneous symmetry breaking in a simple model of ride-sharing adoption. We analyze how collective interactions among ride-sharing users to avoid detours in shared rides give rise to spontaneous symmetry breaking and pattern formation in the adoption dynamics. These dynamics result in bistability of high homogeneous and partial heterogeneous adoption states, potentially limiting the population-wide adoption of ride sharing. Our results provide a framework to understand real-world adoption patterns of ride sharing in complex urban settings and support the (re)design of ride-sharing services and incentives for sustainable shared mobility.


Original languageEnglish
Article number044309
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalPhysical Review E
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 14 Apr 2022

External IDs

WOS 000789300500003
Mendeley 9ef10f19-74ab-30bc-ad04-0f81ba2a8dd7
ORCID /0000-0002-5956-3137/work/142242388


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