How Do Characteristics of the Municipalities Affect the Adoption of Electric Vehicles in Norway?
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A future objective for the Norwegian government is to have a majority of electric vehicles (EVs) in the vehicle market. Compared to other countries, Norway has been successful in the adoption of EVs. However, it is important to note that there are large differences between counties and municipalities considering our data. For the further adoption of EVs, it is important to grasp the significant factors that drive the EV share growth forward, and maybe equally important to shed light on the factors that slow the development. This thesis therefore aims to answer the following research question: “How do municipality characteristics impact the adoption of electric vehicles?” To study this we perform a multiple regression analysis with municipality-level data for several conducted variables related to these two factors. In addition, to gain information on how variables change with the inclusion of new variables, we perform two minor regressions containing variables related strictly to population characteristics, and to the structural characteristics of a municipality which are more related to macro variables. The paper contributes to existing literature by analysing many aspects of EV shares in a municipality with a regression of 30 variables. The regression results present that five variables have a significant and positive influence on EV shares; presence of a major city has the strongest impact, followed by private roads, toll roads, the highest income level group and men. The negative regression results indicate that people above the age of 80 are the largest hindrance towards EV share increase. This is followed closely by European highway roads, the age group between 25-34 and lastly people with primary school as their highest finished education. The results imply that infrastructure plays a great role in the adoption of EVs and can present issues towards increasing the number of EVs in the rural areas of Norway. Ideally, we would have obtained more precise variables to empower our model, yet we conclude that income and infrastructure have been the two largest contributors to the EV shares increasing in a municipality so far. We note that in particular, infrastructure will be important for increasing future adoption of EVs. Most of our findings are in line with corresponding literature within EV adoption, but some differences occur given that Norway is different in some areas than other countries, and that some studies are performed on a regional or country-level. Other studies have neglected to discuss the importance of roads; however, this might be due to them capturing this effect in other ways.