News: Centre Northern LEAD related to Chalmers University of TechnologyTue, 04 Oct 2022 22:04:02 +0200 2022: "Resilience has become crucial for supply chains to survive"<p><b>​Numerous crises have hit our transport networks since the pandemic broke out. So how can we meet the challenges? The importance of resilience – and how to achieve it – was one of the themes of this year's Transport Efficiency Day, TREFF 2022.</b></p><div>​&quot;We can´t count on reality as we did before. All we can do is try to build a resilient society so that we can meet the challenges&quot;.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>With this statement, Ivan Sanchez-Diaz, associate professor at Chalmers and co-director of Northern Lead, framed the initial focus of The Transport Efficiency Day (Transporteffektivitetsdagen), which attracts a variety of actors from the industry, society, and academia each year.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The challenges that the transport sector has faced in recent times seem almost innumerable. Ceren Altuntas Vural, associate professor at Chalmers and Northern Lead, highlighted crisis after crisis which has had a significant impact on supply chains. The pandemic and the war in Ukraine are two of the gravest, prompting additional difficulties such as the energy crisis, increased fuel prices, and shortage of commodities like semiconductors. </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Resilience and sustainability are key</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;After the pandemic, we have been facing closed borders, port closures, a lack of truck drivers, capacity problems, and empty container shortages combined with heavy consumer hoarding. In 2021, the ship blocking the Suez Canal did not help in solving the problems at all… And while we were trying to recover from all these disruptions, the Russian invasion of Ukraine came, which particularly affected the food and energy supply chains. All these disruptions after another increased costs and consequently caused long-lasting inflation in many countries in the world&quot;, she says.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The effects on the supply chains are tangible and have led to a lack of goods and services, continued uncertainty in demand and supply, and higher prices for the consumer, amongst other things.<br /><br /> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Resilient supply chains have always been on our agenda. But now, resilience has become almost the most important capability for supply chains to survive, combined with sustainability goals&quot;, says Ceren Altuntas Vural.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Research on the disruptions</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Johan Woxenius, professor of maritime logistics at the University of Gothenburg and Northern Lead, pointed out that the many crises at least have led to some media interest, bringing attention to the importance of functioning supply chains.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>He added port conflicts, cyber-attacks, low water levels in rivers, and a lack of skilled labour to the long list of challenges in recent years, as well as high prices and shortage of components, commodities, food, and energy. Johan Woxenius and his research colleagues are examining the disruptions of maritime supply chains in several collaborative projects.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Our interest lies in what we can do about this. How can we create resilience and what types of disturbances might lie ahead?&quot;</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Hard to foresee all crises </h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>All results are not yet compiled but looking at today's situation he can at least note some bright spots. Prices are coming down, as well as lead times to cross the pacific and in the ports.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;One difficulty is that the systems for energy, transport, and raw materials are so large and slow-moving that it takes a long time to increase capacity. And you need to know that there is a long-term utility to be able to pay back the investments&quot;, he says.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Johan Woxenius emphasized that the complexity of our supply chains means that many crises and complications can´t be foreseen. He illustrated his point by describing the situation with laser grade neon, used in the high-quality lasers needed to manufacture semiconductors.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;50 percent of laser grade neon was made in Ukraine, and the rest in China. And it takes a long lead time to build new factories. So, you can see the complexity! The unexpected things will come, in different forms and different patterns&quot;, he says.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Too much autonomy can be problematic</h3> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <div> Cecilia Malmström, former European Union Commissioner for Trade, spoke about how the trade sector and supply chains have been impacted by the current geopolitical situation. </div> <div></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Trade has become increasingly complex. We must take geopolitics into consideration, and companies need to adapt and plan for different scenarios. That requires increased transparency, better use of digital tools, flexibility, resilience, and diversification&quot;, she says.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Cecilia Malmström stated that trade in the west has been marked by protectionism and that we will see an increased focus on regionalized trade. New terms have popped up, such as &quot;Friends-shoring&quot;, a concept that seeks to reallocate production and sourcing away from unreliable partners.<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Independence can be a good thing, she pointed out, but too much autonomy can also be a trap. </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;In certain areas, it makes a lot of sense to have your own production or try to diversify. But we are all interdependent and we have so many problems we need to solve together&quot;, she says.<br /><br /><div><em>Text: Ulrika Ernström</em></div> <em> </em><div><em> </em></div> <em> </em><div><em> </em></div> <em> </em><div><em> </em></div> <em> </em><div><span style="display:inline-block"><em>Photo: via Closer</em></span><br /></div>  </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">More voices from The Transport Efficiency Day</h3> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Sandra Runsten, Sweco</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em>“The society we create today needs to be sustainable enough to last for decades, yet needs to be flexible and adaptable”</em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><br />Henrik Åkerman, Picadeli</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em>”We are a better company now than before the pandemic. That's because we adapted and took advantage of smart technical systems”</em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Cecilia Malmström, former member of the European Parliament</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em>“Is this the death of globalization? My answer is no. We will see a regionalization of trade, but that’s not in contradiction with globalization. However, the governance of globalization is in a huge crisis, and we need global rules and international, multilateral frameworks”</em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">About Transport Efficiency Day / Transporteffektivitetsdagen</h3> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><a href="" target="_blank">Transport Efficiency Day</a> is an annual conference organized by <a href="/en/centres/lead/">Northern Lead</a> logistics centre at Chalmers and the University of Gothenburg, and <a href="" target="_blank">CLOSER</a> at Lindholmen. The event took place on August 30th 2022, and the topic was &quot;Smart freight transportation to support a resilient society&quot;.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div>Thu, 01 Sep 2022 11:00:00 +0200 to improve energy efficiency in operations<p><b>​Operations rely on energy in the production and transportation of goods and services. Recent events and its consequences have caused supply chain disruptions and energy price hikes, and this requires not only to use alternative energy sources but also pacing and accelerating the improvement of energy efficiency. However, companies need more guidance to embrace engagement in and replication of such an improvement, in order to cultivate conditions that encourage practicing sustainability in the workplace. Naghmeh Taghavi investigates this in her doctoral thesis.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">​What challenges do you focus on in your research?</h3> <div>&quot;Whereas sustainability orientation has been initiated at the corporate level through including sustainability oriented ambitions in corporations' strategic directions, how those ends might be achieved in practice is not thoroughly clear. Specifically, while energy efficiency is considered as a legitimate sustainability-related objective, companies still have little incentive to increase the energy efficiency of their operations.  As a result, a great potential for improved energy efficiency has remained to be achieved via engaging in and replicating non-technological improvements.&quot;<br /><br />&quot;However, promoting and sustaining such improvements requires strategic-operational alignment for resources utilization and influencing individual and collective actions via developing people's skills and competences.  Therefore, my research focuses on complexities of connecting strategic-operational priorities, as well as challenge in integration between objectives and actionable practices within and across organizations to improve energy efficiency and to facilitate practicing sustainability.&quot;</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address the problem with your research?</h3> <div>&quot;My research expands current understandings of improving energy efficiency in operations as a firm-based practice. Therefore, in my research,  first I investigate which activities shape the process of improving energy efficiency in operations, how and why actions and meanings lead to improved energy efficiency and by whom the activities are interpreted and employed. Such an understanding can ensure a consensus and close interaction of different stakeholders and as a result enable actualization of objectives for energy efficiency.&quot;<br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;Later, I investigate improving energy efficiency in operations as a practice which interrelates with both corporate -level sustainability-related strategic intentions as well as other strategic intentions for operations and how they mutually influence each other. By exploring originations' strategic-operational alignment, I seek to address the challenge of realization of different strategies in operations.&quot;<br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;Finally, I investigate mechanisms to integrate and coordinate interaction between individuals within organization to foster changes as a means to promote sustainability through building up competences, and ensuring continuity and repeatedly achieving improvements.&quot;</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What are the main findings of your research? </h3> <div>&quot;The findings showcase examples of the bidirectional perspective on synergy between operations management and energy management. Moreover, they suggest that the process of actualizing corporate-level objectives for energy efficiency in operations is not a top–down or bottom–up escalation of either the organization’s strategic intentions for sustainability or its strategic intentions for operations – but a continuous participatory process. By extension, the findings highlight an intermediate level of actors expanding the top-down duality of individuals. These actors foster improved energy efficiency in operations in their attempt to create an overlap between their roles and responsibilities and improving energy efficiency.&quot;<br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;By capturing how individuals engage in improvements, the findings suggest that improving energy efficiency in operations is deployed in practice not via sequential steps but via loops that can be generated in three ways: taking advantage of a mutual language, creating common interpretations, and fostering mutual interest. In that light, the findings advocates sharing accountability across domains while at once integrating competencies, instead of institutionalizing improving energy efficiency in operations in roles that lack decisive power and proximity to operations.&quot;<br /><br /></div> <div>&quot;Furthermore, the findings reveal how improving energy efficiency in operations can serve as a launchpad for facilitating knowledge exchange, by placing individuals together and allowing them to share knowledge via formal and informal mechanisms and, as a result, cultivate changes in individual and collective actions and understandings via three processes: sharing knowledge between experts and novices, embedding knowledge in material elements and infrastructure, and treating the innovation of knowledge as an ongoing process.&quot;</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div>&quot;I hope that my research can help companies and guide practitioners to continue engaging in improvement through promoting strategic-operational alignment to improve energy efficiency in operations instead of positioning energy efficiency as a condition or outcome of operations management. Moreover by illuminating the evolution of sustainability as practice, I hope this research can ensure development over time as a means to realize the sustainable development of operation.&quot;<br /><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis <a href="">&quot;Toward the Sustainable Development of Operations: Improving Energy Efficiency as a Means to Sustainability as Practice&quot;</a></div> <div><br />The author will defend the thesis on 13 June 2022 at 13.15, see link on the <a href="">thesis’ page</a></div> <div><br />More about <a href="/en/staff/Pages/Naghmeh.aspx">Naghmeh Taghavi Nejad Deilami</a><br /></div>Thu, 09 Jun 2022 11:00:00 +0200 to the Northern LEAD Day, 21 April 2022<p><b>​​Welcome to an exciting half day where you get the chance to listen to the latest research findings in logistics, transport and supply chain.</b></p><div> Researchers from Chalmers and the University of Gothenburg present their research results and, as usual, you meet many old acquaintances, or make new contacts. We conclude with a network lunch. </div> <div> </div> <div><strong>When? </strong> Thursday 21 April 2022 at 09.00-12.00 followed by lunch</div> <div><strong>Where? </strong> SEB-salen, Handelshögskolan, Vasagatan 1, Göteborg</div> <div><strong>For whom?</strong> For those who are interested in logistics and transport and work at a company, an authority, university or other type of organisation</div> <div><strong>Charge? </strong>Free of charge!</div> <div><strong>Language? </strong> Presentations in English</div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"> PROGRAM</h2> <div> </div> <div>8:30 – 9:00 COFFEE AND MINGLE</div> <div> </div> <div>9:00  WELCOME</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>FANGTING ZHOU</strong></div> <div><em>Horizontal Cooperation in urban distribution logistics</em></div> <div> </div> <div><strong>KONSTANTINA KATSELA </strong></div> <div><em>Transport local, thing global: a study on urban freight micro-hubs</em></div> <div> </div> <div><strong>LOKESH KALAHASTHI</strong></div> <div><em>Autonomous deliveries and the impact on energy consumption</em></div> <div> </div> <div>10:00 COFFEE BREAK</div> <div> </div> <div><strong>ELMIRA PARVIZIOMRAN</strong></div> <div><em>Financing the sustainability transition of the transport system</em></div> <div> </div> <div><strong>ALYONA KHASLAVSKAYA</strong></div> <div><em>The effect of new services on the use of dry ports</em></div> <div> </div> <div><strong>JOHAN WOXENIUS</strong></div> <div><em>How do supply chains respond to disturbances by the pandemic and the war in Ukraine?</em></div> <div> </div> <div>CLOSING </div> <div>12.00 LUNCH </div> <div> </div> <div><br /></div> <p></p> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">REGISTRATION</h2> <p></p> <div><em>(If the registration form is not showing, <a href="" target="_blank">click here</a>)</em><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div>Thu, 31 Mar 2022 12:00:00 +0200's planning guide to balancing demand and supply<p><b>​Matching customer demand with supply capacity is crucial for high manufacturing business performance. In his doctoral thesis, Hafez Shurrab highlights tactical planning and the challenges encountered in complex manufacturing environments in the quest of demand-supply balancing.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What challenges do you focus on in your research?</h3> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Failing to balance demand and supply in manufacturing processes entails frequent swings between over- and undercapacity and consequently generates considerable financial losses. This is true for both engineer-to-order operations (ETO, for products requiring highly customized engineering such as ships, cranes or industrial facilities) and configured-to-order operations (CTO, for products consisting of countless combinations of standard systems, subsystems, and components, such as cars or electronic devices).  The reason is the constant pressure of substantial complexity, such as volatility, uncertainty and ambiguity. Manufacturers respond to such complexity by using planning processes that address the business’s needs and risks at various medium-term horizons, ranging from 3 months to 3 years.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Because the importance of decision-making increases exponentially as the horizon shrinks, understanding the interaction between complexity and demand-supply balancing requires extending findings reported in the literature on operations and supply chain planning and control. Therefore, my thesis addresses complexity’s impact on planning medium-term demand-supply balancing on three horizons: the strategic– tactical interface, the tactical level, and the tactical–operational interface.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address the problem with your research?</h3> <div> </div> <div>&quot;To explore complexity’s impact on demand–supply balancing in planning processes, the thesis draws on five studies, the first two of which addressed customer order fulfillment in ETO operations. In the first study, I examined relevant tactical-level decisions, planning activities, and their interface with the complexity affecting demand–supply balancing at the strategic–tactical interface. The second study revealed the cross-functional mechanisms of integration affecting those decisions and activities and their impact on complexity. Next, the third study investigated areas of uncertainty, information-processing needs (IPNs), and information-processing mechanisms (IPMs) within sales and operations planning in ETO operations. By contrast, the studies that followed addressed material delivery schedules (MDSs) in CTO operations; whereas the fourth study identified complexity interactions causing MDS instability at the tactical–operational interface, the final study quantitatively explained how several factors affect MDS instability.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What are the main findings? </h3></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;The thesis contributes to theory and practice by extending knowledge about relationships between complexity and demand–supply balancing within a medium-term horizon. Its theoretical contributions, in building upon and supporting the limited knowledge on tactical planning in complex manufacturing operations, consist of a detailed tactical-level planning framework, identifying IPNs generated by uncertainty, pinpointing causal and moderating factors of MDS instability, and balancing complexity-reducing and complexity-absorbing strategies, cross-functional integrative mechanisms, IPMs, and dimensions of planning process quality.&quot;<br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;Meanwhile, its practical contributions consist of concise yet holistic descriptions of relationships between complexity in context and in demand-supply balancing. Manufacturers can readily capitalize on those descriptions to develop and implement context-appropriate tactical-level planning processes that enable efficient, informed, and effective decision-making.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div> </div> <div>&quot;I hope my results lead to increased research and industrial interest in developing tactical planning and related tools in a more integrated way so that decision-makers at various levels encounter fewer uncertainties about resource allocation and higher flexibility for problem-solving. Such conditions facilitate better use of resources and more effective investments. Examples of expected investments can be initiatives for improving the scalability of capacity downstream and flexibility in supply chain order fulfillment upstream and initiatives for developing predictive machine learning models for identifying and managing demand- and supply-related uncertainties.&quot;</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis: <a href="" target="_blank">Balancing Demand and Supply in Complex Manufacturing Operations: Tactical-Level Planning Processes</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The author will defend the thesis on 21 March 2022 at 13:15, see link on the <a href="" target="_blank">thesis' page</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>More about <a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/hafez.aspx">Hafez Shurrab</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div>Tue, 08 Mar 2022 14:00:00 +0100 access to home delivery services<p><b>​The pandemic has revealed large variations in the accessibility to goods via online home delivery services. Those who may have the greatest need – such as the elderly in rural areas – have the least access. However, the new research from Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden, also shows a distinct improvement during the pandemic.</b></p><div>​The Covid-19 pandemic has increased the demand for home delivery of various types of goods, pharmacy products and food. But access to the services is not equal. The new study from Chalmers, published in the scientific journal Transport Policy, shows that marginalized groups have less chances of using online home delivery services.</div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;The results confirmed that online home delivery services were designed for homogeneous market segments, such as urban young citizens with medium to high income&quot;, says Associate Professor Ivan Sanchez-Diaz, who directed the study together with colleagues Associate Professor Ceren Altuntas Vural and Professor Árni Halldórsson at the Department of Technology Management and Economics.</div> <div> </div> <div>The research was conducted as a regional case study in Sweden. Selected geographic areas were linked to demographic indicators of the population, such as age, citizenship, education level and income. The data was later analysed together with the geographical coverage of logistics service providers during two occasions – the first wave of the pandemic in the spring of 2020 and the third wave of the pandemic in April 2021.</div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;The data from the spring of 2020 showed a market failure. Lack of accessibility to online home delivery services was determined by the location, which was compounded with certain demographic characteristics: older population, lower income and lower level of education&quot;, says Ceren Altuntas Vural.</div> <div> </div> <div>The proximity to a major city is a factor explaining accessibility. However, there were some areas within the city municipality with low access, and that tend to overlap with older population, and lower income. Simultaneously, some zones with high income outside the municipality have acceptable access to home delivery services.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Improvements during the pandemic</h3> <div>The second data set from April 2021 indicated that the coverage was improved, so there were some learnings from the pandemic. After the first two waves of the pandemic, the main changes were seen in pharmacies that went from 62% to 99% of coverage in home deliveries, and food that went from about 40% to 60% in coverage. In terms of parcels, small logistics players grew significantly both in scale and in scope of their home delivery services.</div> <div> </div> <div>&quot;This study shows the necessity of an inclusive service design. Logistics service providers and companies that want to provide home delivery services to their customers should not think that ‘one size fits all’. They need to increase focus on social sustainability and make sure that the services are designed in a way that enables accessibility to goods, even if the social status or location of certain customer groups lead to some market disadvantages&quot;, says Árni Halldórsson.</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Lessons for companies and society</h3> <div>The researchers present some key learning points from the pandemic that can help companies to design more inclusive services:</div> <ul><li>Offering non-digital alternatives for payment, as not everyone has access to digital ID or payment services.</li> <li>Deliveries to pick-up points, although more efficient and environmentally sustainable, can be a challenge for people with limited mobility or when there is a risk of contagion so they may not be sufficient in terms of access to goods. </li> <li>Retailers and pharmacies should coordinate with different logistics companies to find ways to reach all customers at home in a cost-effective way. Also, when conditions do not allow for a cost-effective home delivery service, there should be a public or social organization that enable home delivery for the vulnerable population. </li></ul> <div> &quot;The study's conclusions are also important for policy makers, particularly for those who design public services for the elderly or people with certain disadvantages. There are a lot of potential synergies between business logistics activities and public services. A collaboration between these actors might yield to more inclusive and efficient home delivery logistics services&quot;, Ivan Sanchez-Diaz concludes.</div> <div> </div> <div>The researchers will continue their studies, including a greater focus on inequality in home deliveries of food.</div> <div> </div> <div><span><img src="/sv/institutioner/tme/nyheter/PublishingImages/leveransforskare_750x340.jpg" alt="Forskarna vid Chalmers" style="margin:5px" /><br /><em>The researchers </em><span><span></span><em>Ivan Sanchez-Diaz, Ceren Altuntas Vural and Árni Halldórsson, Department of </em></span></span><span><span><span><em>T</em><span style="display:inline-block"></span><em>echnology Management and Economics</em></span></span></span><span><span><em>, Chalmers.</em><br /></span> </span><br /></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">About the study<span></span></h3> <div>The researchers conducted a case study in Västra Götaland region of Sweden. A sample of postal codes within this region were selected for the analysis. Then some demographic indicators of the population registered to these postal codes were collected from national statistics. These indicators included age, citizenship, education level and income. </div> <div> </div> <div>The data was later analysed together with the geographical coverage of home delivery services provided by three logistics service providers that deliver parcels and two pharmacies that deliver prescribed drugs. Data was collected twice, during the first wave of the pandemic in the spring of 2020 and the third wave of the pandemic in April 2021.</div> <div> </div> <div>The results of the study were published in Transport Policy, vol 109: <a href="" target="_blank">&quot;Assessing the inequalities in access to online delivery services and the way COVID-19 pandemic affects marginalization&quot;</a></div> <div> </div> <div><span><div><em><br />Text: Daniel Karlsson</em></div> <div><em>Photo: Chalmers / CFFC (portrait, USDA - public domain (illustration photo)<br /></em></div> <div><br /></div> <div><span><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Contacts:</h3> <a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/ivan-sanchez.aspx"><div>Ivan Sanchez-Diaz</div> </a></span><span><span>Associate Professor, </span>Technology Management and Economics</span><span><div><a href=""></a>, +46 31 7725154 </div> <div><a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/ivan-sanchez.aspx"><br /></a></div> <a href="/en/staff/Pages/ceren-altuntasvural.aspx" target="_blank"><div>Ceren Altuntas Vural</div> </a></span><span><span><span><span>Associate Professor, </span>T<span style="display:inline-block"></span>echnology Management and Economics</span></span></span><span><div><a href=""></a>, +46 31 7726903</div> <div><br /></div> <a href="/en/staff/Pages/arni-halldorsson.aspx"><div>Árni Halldórsson</div> </a></span><span><span><span><span>Professor, </span>T<span style="display:inline-block"></span>echnology Management and Economics</span></span></span><span><div><a href=""></a>, +46 31 772158</div></span></div></span><br /></div>Thu, 13 Jan 2022 10:00:00 +0100 information for more efficient freight transport<p><b>How can real-time information in intermodal freight transport mitigate impacts from disruptions – and thereby achieve a high efficiency for the transport operations? This is the subject of Per Wide’s doctoral thesis, where operational disruptions have been in focus. Those have minor impacts on the transport but they occur often, for example traffic problems in terms of congestions.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What challenges do you focus on in your research?</h3> <div> </div> <div>There are challenges in reducing extra costs that occur in intermodal freight transport operations due to disruptions. At the same time, there is challenges around to what extent the use of information from information systems, that can offer real-time information to manage these disruptions, influence these extra costs. High costs and inflexibility in intermodal transport operations provide issues to compete with road-based freight transports. </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3"> </h3> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address the problem?</h3> <div> </div> <div>To mitigate the impacts from disruptions and, in that way, lower extra costs on the intermodal freight transport operations my research has investigated real-time information around how a disruption is detected, and how its impacts are predicted, that then leads to an action to change the original plan with the aim to manage a disruption. Additionally, to increase the understanding around the challenges about information and its impacts on the management of disruptions, the efficiency impacts on intermodal freight transport operations are compared when different real-time information is given. </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What are the main findings of your research?</h3> <div> </div> <div>The results show how real-time information creates new opportunities but also demands on the management of disruptions. For example, real-time information can support a management of disruption before impacts have occurred and mitigate impacts on transport operations. In that way real-time information can avoid reactive management of disruptions, when impacts on the transport operations have already occurred and the management relates to higher costs. The thesis also shows how coordination between actors influences the availability of real-time information when a disruption occurs. Moreover, the impacts on operational efficiency measures from disruptions are investigated for various scenarios for real-time information.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Real-time information has been found to take an active or a passive role for the management of disruptions in intermodal freight transport. The active role for real-time information needs understanding around real-time information and how actors involved in the transport chains coordinate their operations.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div> </div> <div>I hope my research will lead to increased understanding about the weight real-time information has for management of disruptions, that can lead to less impacts from disruptions and high efficiency in intermodal freight transport. Hopefully the research can lead to a process view on how disruptions are managed with support of real-time information. Transport managers and planners can create an understanding for how their management of disruptions can be adjusted to avoid management after impacts from disruptions have occurred, that is linked to high extra costs compared to the planned transport. Hopefully can a high efficiency in intermodal freight transport create improved conditions for a shift from road-based transport.  </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em><br /><br /></div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis: <a href="">“Real-time information for disruption management in intermodal freight transport”</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>The author will defend the thesis on 10 December 2021 at 13.15, see link on the<a href="" target="_blank"> thesis’ page</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>More about <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/per-wide.aspx">Per Wide</a></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div>Tue, 07 Dec 2021 09:00:00 +0100 in relationships crucial for efficient and sustainable transports<p><b>​Transporting goods between buyers and suppliers is vital, but different actors have different performance interests, creating contradictions and misalignments. In his doctoral thesis, Victor Eriksson explores how transport services are embedded in larger network structures, the interdependencies involved, and the consequences of firms’ organising efforts in obtaining various performance benefits.</b></p><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">​What challenges do you focus on in your research?</h3> <div>&quot;The starting point in my research is that any exchange of industrial goods between a supplier and a buyer of goods necessitates transport. The transport is often performed by a third party who sells this service to either the buyer or supplier of goods. Transport impacts to environment immensely and is a highly discussed topic for firms and governments alike.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <div>&quot;With increased demand and growth of transport in general but freight transport in particular, a transport revolution is needed to reach the agreed goals of, e.g., reduce greenhouse gas emissions and lessen the overall environmental impact regarding transport set by firms and governments. When considering the challenges ahead concerning sustainability in the transport sector, the relationships connecting the actors involved in transport services, directly or indirectly, are essential to understanding structures, processes, and interactions among the actors embedded in networks. For example, changes to the services in one part of the network may drive changes elsewhere in the network. Therefore, it is of prime importance how to organise transport and adjacent activities and resources in networks.&quot;</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">How do you address the problem with your research?</h3> <div>&quot;The exchange of transport services depends on the exchange of goods since the exchange of goods generates demand for transport services. I introduce a construct called the transport service triad. The transport service triad involves three firms that have one of the following four generic roles: the buyer of goods, the supplier of goods, the buyer of transport services, and the supplier of transport services. The transport service triad is used to explore connections among business relationships involved in the exchange of goods and the exchange of transport services. The transport service triad, as it includes three actors, offers a greater explanatory power compared to a single actor’s perspective or a dyadic perspective on the organisation of transport services because such a perspective can capture interdependencies in various dimensions in business relationships, connections between business relationships, and how and why firms and relationships are embedded.&quot; </div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What are the main findings of your research? </h3> <div>&quot;The results show how triads in general, and the transport service triad in particular, are critical units of analysis to understand how business relationships are connected in supply networks. I propose a model for analysing connected relationships and the implications thereof considering the activities, resources, and actors. The results highlight the importance of considering both relational and structural embeddedness and the duality of the transport service triad as an important structure in itself and as a part of the broader network, accentuating interdependencies of activities, resources, and actors.&quot;<br /> <br /></div> <div>&quot;This thesis shows that a network-level analysis is imperative to address the organising of transport services and transport performance by focusing on how business relationships within one transport service triad are connected to the other actors in the triad but also these actors’ connections to firms outside the triad and how firms subsequently organise because of those connections. For that reason, the research suggests suppliers and buyers of goods and transport services, transport service providers, and other connected actors to jointly coordinate the transport services efficiency of vehicle maintenance, vehicle utilisation, and road transport.&quot;</div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">What do you hope your research will lead to?</h3> <div>&quot;I hope that the results will facilitate further exploration of how firms are connected in networks that may capture network aspects of the transformation to sustainable transport solutions in which different kinds of system descriptions are needed that supplement each other. The results of my research point to that the interaction and exchange of perspectives of firms are crucial when managers strive to both change the way transport is organised and enhance the transport performance of firms. I also hope that my research sparks new thinking about transport as a highly integrated part of networks, thereby moving away from a general idea of considering transport merely as a support function to the exchange of goods.&quot; </div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /><em>Text compilation: Daniel Karlsson</em><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>Read the thesis <a href="">&quot;Transport service triads in supply networks&quot; <br /></a> </div> <div><br />The thesis defence will be online on Zoom, 24 September 2021 at 13.15, see link on <a href="">thesis’ page</a></div> <div><br /> </div> <div>More about <a href="/en/Staff/Pages/vicerik.aspx">Victor Eriksson</a></div>Mon, 20 Sep 2021 15:00:00 +0200