Licentiate thesis, 2019

Functional seaport’s hinterland transport system may benefit multiple stakeholders, i.e., seaports, transport operators, shippers, regions; however, expectations and benefits vary. Well-developed seaport’s hinterland transport system serves to increase seaport’s competitiveness; to improve accessibility of the hinterland regions; to enhance economic and environmental indicators of transport operators and shippers. As means of hinterland transport system development in past decade, a dry port concept has attracted attention among academics and practitioners. The concept represents an intermodal terminal located in the seaport’s hinterland, directly connected to the seaport by rail, where the shippers can pick up/leave their standardized units as if directly at the seaport. Considering multi stakeholder environment of dry ports operations, this thesis attempts to advance knowledge on dry ports’ benefits for the stakeholders and ability of the dry ports to generate the same, by both focusing on benefits for a bigger system (supply chain) and also by taking perspective of each individual stakeholder. Several types of dry ports varying in services provided are analyzed to study their ability to generate the benefits for stakeholders and hence to help them to meet their various objectives (Multi-Actor Multi-Criteria Analysis). By combining findings from a Systematic Literature Review and empirical evidences from the stakeholders involved in dry port operations in Sweden, the thesis aims to identify dry ports’ benefits for the stakeholders in a seaport’s hinterland transport system in order to increase understanding about the dry ports’ role in that system.

The thesis is built upon three studies: Systematic Literature Review, interview based case study and personal interview survey study. The systematic literature review on dry ports-related research serves as a basis for the further studies and the thesis itself and summarizes all potential benefits of various dry ports. Interview based case study reveals the country-specific insights and a broad (supply chain) perspective on the studied issues. In turn, interview survey study takes into consideration multiple stakeholders’ objectives and studies dry ports ability to contribute to achieving those (or generate respective benefits).

The results revert in identification of potential benefits of dry port derived from the academic literature (classified into economic, environmental and performance-related) as well as benefits identified empirically for the stakeholders relevant to the Swedish context (in addition to the literature finding: benefits classified under responsiveness, resilience, security and
innovativeness). Results also show that the identified stakeholders experience gradual improvement of their objectives (hence gaining benefits generated by the dry ports) with advancement of the dry ports’ configuration. Experts’ evaluation validates the findings, although is more “restrained” than the stakeholders’ one.

The thesis contributes to the field of intermodal transport with focus on dry ports in seaports’ hinterland transport system by summarizing already existing knowledge and by providing insights into country-specific context (Sweden). The results may also have managerial implications in form of information support for the stakeholders’ decision-making processes regarding seaport’s hinterland transport business as well as for related policy making processes.

Multi-Actor Multi-Criteria Analysis

supply chain outcomes



Dry port concept

seaport’s hinterland transport system

intermodal transport

potential and actual benefits

Seminar room Avenyn, room 3363 (Video streaming from University of Helsinki), Vera Sandbergs allé 8, Gothenburg
Opponent: Anu Bask, Turku University, Finland


Alena Khaslavskaya

Chalmers, Technology Management and Economics, Service Management and Logistics

Dry ports: research outcomes, trends, and future implications

Maritime Economics and Logistics,; Vol. 22(2020)p. 265-292

Journal article

Outcome-Driven Supply Chain Perspective on Dry Ports

Sustainability,; Vol. 11(2019)

Journal article

Khaslavskaya, A., Roso, V., Sanchez-Dias, I., “Multi-Actor Multi-Criteria Analysis of Services at Dry Ports in Sweden”

Subject Categories

Transport Systems and Logistics



Seminar room Avenyn, room 3363 (Video streaming from University of Helsinki), Vera Sandbergs allé 8, Gothenburg

Opponent: Anu Bask, Turku University, Finland

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