Sexism is a common occurrence on Philippine roads. When a female driver makes any seemingly unwise decisions or maneuvers on the road, people are quick to say, “Kaya pala, babae kasi (It’s a woman driving, that’s why).” This type of reasoning remains prevalent among Filipinos nowadays, but are men really better drivers?
A global study says otherwise, as it discovered that women aren’t the inferior sex, or that being a female means being a bad driver.
Using cutting-edge emotion tracking technology, chatbots, mobile apps, and weather and traffic information, the Shell Driving Experiment uncovered how the emotions of drivers affect their performance on the road.
Shell worked with experts from Goldsmiths, University of London to monitor data points from over 2,000 participants across 11 countries to measure the driver performance score of each country and learn about the different factors that affect it.
Using data from Philippine participants who logged in more than 1,700 journeys across three key areas (Metro Manila, Cebu, and Davao), the Shell Driving Experiment busted the myth that driving performance is dictated by gender.
It found no evidence that gender has any significant influence on driving performance. The biggest indicator of how well a person performs behind the wheel is, in fact, their personality type.
Two unique, high-performing personality types among Filipino drivers were uncovered by the study: the Modern Man and the Gamma Woman.
The Modern Man is the type of driver who has a unique combination of sensitive and ambitious personality traits, leading to his ability to maintain a well-balanced emotional state behind the wheel. He adapts well to any situation in life and exercises cautiousness on the road to achieve outstanding driver performance scores.
The Gamma Woman, on the other hand, is known for her openness and emotional stability both on and off the road, leading to exceptional driving performance scores.
The study also revealed that among the different countries that took part in the study, the Philippines achieved the highest driving performance score. This means that Filipinos, regardless of gender, have smoother journeys (less incidents of harsh acceleration and harsh braking) and are more efficient than other drivers from participating countries such as Malaysia, Germany, and the Netherlands.
Family’s role in the lives of Filipinos was apparent in the Shell Driving Experiment. Evidence linking the presence of children and additional passengers in the car to better driving performance was consistent throughout the study.
The Shell Driving Experiment also confirmed that stress is a constant emotion felt by Filipinos on the road. Destination is also another factor, with findings showing that drivers who are on their way to work are more stressed than those who are on the road for other purposes.
Even the food we eat plays a role in our driving performance. Participants of the study who reported feeling hungry during their journey had lower driver performance scores.
“The Shell Driving Experiment is part of Shell’s efforts to understand the changing needs of our customers,” says Anthony Lawrence Yam, vice president for Retail at Pilipinas Shell.
He adds that the study helps the company create better products and services, such as new fuels like the Shell V-Power with DYNAFLEX Technology, and expand its non-fuel offerings at Shell Select.