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Effects of new dock-less bicycle-sharing programs on cycling: a retrospective study in Shanghai
  1. Yingnan Jia1,2,
  2. Ding Ding3,4,
  3. Klaus Gebel3,5,6,
  4. Lili Chen1,2,
  5. Sen Zhang1,2,
  6. Zhicong Ma1,2,
  7. Hua Fu1,2
  1. 1 School of Public Health, Key Lab of Public Health Safety of the Ministry of Education, Fudan University, Shanghai, China
  2. 2 Health Communication Institute, Fudan University, Shanghai, China
  3. 3 Prevention Research Collaboration, Sydney School of Public Health, The University of Sydney, Camperdown, New South Wales, Australia
  4. 4 The Charles Perkins Centre, University of Sydney, Camperdown, New South Wales, Australia
  5. 5 School of Allied Health, Australian Catholic University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  6. 6 Centre for Chronic Disease Prevention, School of Public Health, Tropical Medicine and Rehabilitation Sciences, James Cook University, Smithfield, Queensland, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Ding Ding; melody.ding{at} and Professor Hua Fu; hfu{at}


Objectives To examine (1) the effect of new dock-less bicycle-sharing programmes on change in travel mode and (2) the correlates of change in travel mode.

Design A retrospective natural experimental study.

Setting 12 neighbourhoods in Shanghai.

Participants 1265 respondents were recruited for a retrospective study in May 2017.

Main outcome measures Prevalence of cycling before and after launch of dock-less bicycle-sharing programme.

Results The proportion of participants cycling for transport increased from 33.3% prior to the launch of the bicycle-sharing programmes to 48.3% 1 year after the launch (p<0.001). Being in the age group of 30–49 years (OR 2.28; 95% CI 1.30 to 4.00), living within the inner ring of the city (OR 2.27; 95% CI 1.22 to 4.26), having dedicated bicycle lanes (OR 1.37, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.68) and perceiving riding shared bicycles as fashionable (OR 1.46, 95% CI 1.21 to 1.76) were positively associated with adopting cycling for transport. Access to a public transportation stop/station (OR 0.82, 95% CI 0.67 to 0.99) was inversely correlated with adopting cycling for transport.

Conclusions Dock-less bicycle sharing may promote bicycle use in a metropolitan setting. Findings from this study also highlight the importance of cycling-friendly built environments and cultural norms as facilitators of adopting cycling.

  • bicycle-sharing
  • cycling
  • travel mode
  • active travel
  • built environment
  • social norms

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  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • DD and HF contributed equally.

  • Contributors YJ and HF conceived the idea, analysed the data and drafted the paper. DD, KG, LC, SZ and ZM contributed to the writing and assisted with the analysis and interpretation. YJ, LC, SZ and ZM contributed to collecting the data. All authors have read and approved the final manuscript.

  • Funding The work was supported by the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Health and Family Planning (Grant No. 15GWZK1001 and 2013SY006).

  • Disclaimer The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish or preparation of the manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval This study received approval from the ethics committee of the School of Public Health of Fudan University, China (IRB00002408 and FWA0002399).

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement Please contact authors for data requests.

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