Freight Transportation Operations and Information Sharing
Licentiate thesis, 2008
Freight transportation operations are becoming increasingly complex due to an escalating number of actors and infrastructure capacity bottlenecks. Today’s transportation operations rely on static procedures instead of being actively controlled to achieve effective synchronization of the actors’ operations, resulting in slow responses to events and long waiting times in the transportation setup. Information availability is a prerequisite to control and plan freight transportation operations. Literature covers several studies on information sharing between suppliers and customers, but studies involving the transport operators are few. Together with the shortcomings of today’s transportation setups, this calls for models on increased use, availability and sharing of information between actors.
This thesis is based on an extensive information requirements study involving all the actors in an international transportation setup. An in-depth study of the involved actors was carried out and the requirements of effective transportation operations were extracted through literature studies, interviews, observations and document studies. The main contribution is a model of effective transportation operations and an enabling framework. Some of the results, including the framework, have previously been published in the three appended papers. The requirements analysis, the model of effective transportation operations and the enabling framework were mainly validated through a demonstration prototype and a validation case.
The results indicate that transportation operations have a large potential for improvement in several stages of the setup. Actors in the transportation setup need to share and use more information in order to achieve more effective transportation operations.