Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Industrial and Managements Systems Engineering

Committee Chair

Dimitra Pyrialakou

Committee Co-Chair

Leily Farrokhvar

Committee Member

Kenneth Currie

Committee Member

Behrooz Kamali


Although most transit systems operate in small urban and rural areas in the United States, these systems have rarely received the same attention as their urban counterparts, both in terms of ensuring the efficiency and effectiveness of their operations and understanding the factors that affect their performance. This thesis's main goals are to assess the performance of rural and small urban public transit agencies and help them evaluate adopting a ridehailing program, thereby improving their performance. We applied operations research and decision-making tools to two public transit projects in small urban and rural areas. The first project focuses on three models developed to evaluate the efficiency, effectiveness, and combined efficiency-effectiveness of rural transit agencies using data envelopment analysis. The models were estimated for the case study of transit systems in rural Appalachia and measured the agencies' performance relative to their peers. Besides, the returns to scale were explored in the context of rural transit management. The second project focused on employing ridehailing programs in small urban and rural areas to improve agencies’ performance and reach. The most relevant criteria were identified to evaluate the performance of different ridehailing programs using multi-criteria decision analysis methodology. To perform a set of MCDA methods, we used the perceived rating of each ridehailing program according to the stakeholders' opinions with respect to each criterion. The framework was estimated for the case study of Mountain Line Transit Authority in Morgantown, WV.

Embargo Reason

Publication Pending