Fairness-Aware Demand Prediction for New Mobility
Emerging transportation modes, including car-sharing, bike-sharing, and ride-hailing, are transforming urban mobility yet have been shown to reinforce socioeconomic inequity. These services rely on accurate demand prediction, but the demand data on which these models are trained reflect biases around demographics, socioeconomic conditions, and entrenched geographic patterns. To address these biases and improve fairness, we present FairST, a fairness-aware demand prediction model for spatiotemporal urban applications, with emphasis on new mobility. We use 1D (time-varying, space-constant), 2D (space-varying, time-constant) and 3D (both time- and space-varying) convolutional branches to integrate heterogeneous features, while including fairness metrics as a form of regularization to improve equity across demographic groups. We propose two spatiotemporal fairness metrics, region-based fairness gap (RFG), applicable when demographic information is provided as a constant for a region, and individual-based fairness gap (IFG), applicable when a continuous distribution of demographic information is available. Experimental results on bike share and ride share datasets show that FairST can reduce inequity in demand prediction for multiple sensitive attributes (i.e. race, age, and education level), while achieving better accuracy than even state-of-the-art fairness-oblivious methods.