Conference Programme



The 4th VREF Conference on Urban Freight will present current issues influencing urban freight research and discuss the interactions between planning, design and business to achieve scalable innovations in the management of urban freight flows that support the goal of achieving liveable cities.

More than 80 research contributions will be part of the 4th VREF Conference on Urban Freight. Check the book of abstracts in the link below.

Book of abstracts 4th VREF Conference on Urban Freight- March 23-25 2021.pdfBook of abstracts 4th VREF Conference on Urban Freight- March 23-25 2021.pdf


The Urban Freight Platform (UFP) is an initiative supported by Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF) on urban freight research based in Gothenburg, Sweden. The UFP works as a facilitator of academic research on urban freight within the context of the logistics competence centre Northern LEAD at University of Gothenburg and Chalmers University of Technology.

This year the conference has received the support from ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability that will lead two plenary sessions: one workshop featuring the launch of the EcoLogistics Report 2021 with high-level speakers and one roundtable on improving last-mile deliveries. ICLEI is a global network of more than 1,750 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development. 

Conference Overview

​The central topic of the 4th VREF Conference is Urban freight and liveable cities: Interactions between planning, design and business for scalable innovations. ​Take a look at this video for general highlights from the virtual event held during March 2021. 


Day 1:

Tuesday 23 March

08.30 - 10.00    Session 1 - Plenary: Opening session and welcome 

         Conference opening [Video​]​

                     ​Henrik Nolmark, Director, Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF)

                     Jiunn-Ming Chiou, CEO, ICLEI Ecologistics Community Chair Office / Deputy Secretary General, Taoyuan City Government

                     Tu My Tran, Head of Sustainable Mobility Officer, ICLEI World Secretariat

                     ​​John Wedel, Head of Infrastructure and Logistics at Business Region Gothenburg

                     Catrin Lammgård, Co-Director Northern LEAD, on behalf of University of Gothenburg and Chalmers University of Technology

         Presentations - Moderator Michael Browne, University of Gothenburg

               The Gothenburg Freight Network [Video]

                  Ann-Sofie Karlsson, Planeringsledare Gods - och citylogistik Trafikkontoret

                     Hannes Lindkvist, Chair Gothenburg Freight Network, Chalmers University of Technology

               The view from Urban Design [Video]                

                     Jorge Gil, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Chalmers University of Technology

13.30 - 15.00   Session 2 - Parallel sessions (see details below)

15.30 - 17.00   Session 3 - Parallel sessions (see details below)

17.00                End of Day 1

Day 2:

Wednesday 24 March*

08.30 - 10.00    Session 4 - Parallel sessions (see details below)

12.00 - 13.00    Session 5 - Plenary: ICLEI workshop [Video]

         Welcome and introduction by the moderator and the Ecologistics Report 2021 launch

                     Yiqian Zhang, Sustainable Mobility Office, ICLEI World Secretariat 

           Presentations: Ecologistics in Argentina, Colombia and India

 ​                    Sanjit RodriguesIAIS, Commissioner-Corporation of the City of Panaji - India

                     Juan David Palacio, Director, Área Metropolitana del Valle de Aburrá, Medellín - Colombia

 ​​                    Camilo Urbano, Director of Urban Planning, Despacio 

               Moderated panel discussion / Q&A

         Closing remarks

13.30 - 15.00    Session 6 - Parallel sessions (see details below)

15.30 - 16.30    Session 7 - Plenary: ICLEI roundtable [Video]

         Introduction by the moderator

                     Michael Browne, Professor of logistics and urban freight transport, University of Gothenburg 


 ​                     Lina Carreño, Technical focal point - city of Bogotá, Colombia

                      Juan Esteban MartínezUndersecretary of Policies for Mobility, District Secretariat of Mobility, Bogotá, Colombia

                     Representative from the city of Rosario, Argentina

         Moderated panel discussion / Q&A / speakers above and including...

                  Tu My Tran, Head of Sustainable Mobility, ICLEI World Secretariat

17.00 - 18.30    Session 8 - Parallel sessions (see details below)

18.30                 End of Day 2

Day 3:

Thursday 25 March*

08.30 - 10.00    Session 9 - Parallel sessions (see details below)

13.30 - 15.00    Session 10 - Plenary: Presentations and closing [Video​]

           Presentation and discussion:


                Michael Browne, Professor of logistics and urban freight transport, University of Gothenburg  

             Decarbonising urban freight: How to reach the goal of zero emissions

 ​               Verena Ehrier, Univ. of Gustave Eiffel, Chair of the Community of Interest on Urban Freight, Transport Decabornisation Alliance

               A city and region perspective on collaborative solutions for clean and efficient urban logistics

                Giacomo Lozzi, Senior Project Manager, Coordinator Urban Freight, POLIS

              Reflections on post-pandemic urban freight

 ​​               Ian Wainwright, Future City Logistics

           Closing remarks [Video​]

 ​​            Ceren Altuntas Vural​, Co-Director Northern LEAD, on behalf of Chalmers Univ. of Technology and the Univ. of Gothenburg 

             Johan Woxenius, Professor, University of Gothenburg, member of the VREF Scientific Council

15.00    End of conference

*Central European Standard Time

Presentations at parallel sessions

Session A - Pandemic

Chair - Michael Browne, University of Gothenburg

Ugboma Ogochukwu, School of Transport, Lagos State University, Nigeria        

An examination of last-mile logistics of food value chain during COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in metropolitan Lagos​

Joris Beckers, University of Antwerp, Belgium 

The impact of COVID-19 on online sales of small retailers: a transport perspective

Ceren Altuntas Vural, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden [Video​​]   

#Stayhome but how will the goods come to you? Providing access to goods during a pandemic

Laetitia Dablanc, Gustave Eiffel University, Paris, France [Video​] 

Urban logistics in times of lockdown: an analysis of three surveys in France

Session B - Digitalization & automation

Chair - Michela Le Pira, University of Catania 

Daniel Olejarz, University of Toronto, Canada   

An assessment of the use of autonomous ground vehicles for last mile parcel delivery

Nadia Pourmohammad-Zia, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands 

Zone Selection for Testing Autonomous Last-Mile Container Cargo Delivery in the Municipality of Rotterdam

Mathieu Gardrat, LAET, Université de Lyon, France           

Markov based mesoscopic simulation tool for urban freight: SIMTURB

Jean-Paul Rodrigue, Hofstra University, New York, USA         

Home-Based Delivery Supply Chains: The Digitalization Paradigm

Session C - Policy and planning

Chair - Ian Wainwright, Future City Logistics

Middela Siddartha [Video]

​Freight trip generation models for an industrial state: Lessons and opportunities for city logistics practices

Lokesh Kalahasthi, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden [Video​]

Service Trip Attraction: Implications to Curbside Management

Catherine Gateri, Dept. of Construction & Real Estate Mgt, Kenyatta University, Kenya [Video]  

An Overview of  Planning for Urban Freight Transport in Nairobi Metropolitan Area

Forson Abdul-Azeez, Ibraheem School of Transport, Lagos State University, Nigeria        

Strategies for managing freight flows in metropolitan Lagos

Session D - From global flows to urban traffic

Chair - Johan Woxenius, University of Gothenburg

Abisai Konstantinus, Centre for Transport Studies, University of Cape Town, South Africa [Video​]       

Intermodal Transport in the Southern African Development Community Region: A Mode Choice Assessment in favor of Short-sea Shipping

Claudia De Fuentes, Saint Mary’s University, Canada [Video​]

Gateways and corridors, knowledge hubs, and urban democracy: The case of Halifax, Nova Scotia

Jean Michel Montsion, York University, Canada 

The growing role of Toronto’s regional municipalities in global value chains: A view from suburban stakeholders

Peter Hall, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada [Video​]   

Global value chains, municipal democracy and the Gateway: reproducing differentiated urban space in Metro Vancouver

Yuan Wang, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA [Video​]        

Impact of Port Disruptions to Ferry Terminal Operations Using Discrete Event Simulation.

Session E - Last mile initiatives

Chair - Catrin Lammgård, University of Gothenburg

David Duran-Rodas, Technical University of Munich (TUM), Germany   

Who benefits of parcel lockers in Munich, Germany and their potential integration with cargo bike-sharing?

Frederik Schulte, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands 

Platform-Based Collaborative Routing using Dynamic Prices as Incentives: The Case of a Dutch Trucking Platform

Haena Kim, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA          

Measuring and in-building portion of urban deliveries

Klaas Fiete Krutein, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA          

Lesson Learned from Urban Delivery Vehicle Ridealongs

Session F - Policy and planning

Chair - Laetitia Dablanc, University Gustave Eiffel

John Jairo Posada Henao, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Colombia [Video​]     

Analysis of road tolls and its influence on trucking costs

Diana Patricia, Moreno-Palacio, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Colombia     

Service trips generation modelling in a developing urban area

Giacomo Lozzi, University of Roma Tre / TRElab, Polis Network, Italy      

Logistics Living Lab to co-create innovative logistics solutions: The case of Rome

José Holguin-Veras, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York State, USA [Video]    

Energy Efficient Logistics in the Albany- New York City Corridor

Session G - Sustainable urban freight

Chair - Konstantina Katsela, University of Gothenburg

Cara Wang, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York State, USA    

Principles and Strategies to Foster Freight-Efficient Land Uses

Mustafa Yilmaz, Sivas Cumhuriyet University, Turkey [Video​]     

An online communication tool (dashboard) for receiver-led consolidation (load pooling) processes: InterNodz

Ricardo Quintero-Giraldo, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Colombia     

Emission estimation in intercity trucking freight trips based on known data – case study: Colombia​

Genevieve Giuliano, University of Southern California, USA [Video​]  

Heavy Duty Trucks: The Challenge of Getting to Zero

Session H - Sustainable urban freight

Chair - Ceren Altuntas-Vural, Chalmers University of Technology

Dennis Jose, Urban Mass Transit Company Limited (UMTC), Kochi, Kerala, India [Video​]         

Sustainable Supply Chain Management: Case of Kochi

Amar Kulkarni, ICLEI, India [Video]

Multi-stakeholder approach to promote sustainable urban freight in Indian cities

Marzena Piotrowska, University of Westminster, UK  [Video​]   

Goods deliveries to London schools: Improving efficiency and sustainability

Susanne Balm, Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands [Video]       

The University-community as catalyst for sustainable urban logistics: Experiences and results based on six years of action research in Amsterdam

Session I - On demand economy and urban freight

Chair - Kelly Pitera, Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Elise Caspersen, Institute of Transport Economics, Oslo, Norway [Video​​] 

Consumer preference for home delivery services and transport emission reduction

Gopal Patil, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai, India [Video]   

Consumers Response towards Online Shopping and Assessing Last Mile Logistics Service in India

Yuyang Zhou, Beijing University of Technology, China  

Joint distribution problem for small and medium-sized restaurants with on-line-takeout orders

Zhang Meijing, Singapore University of Technology & Design, Singapore [Video]

Exploring the Potential Impact of Crowdshipping Using Public Transport in Singapore

Session J - Policy and planning

Chair - Ivan Sanchez-Diaz, Chalmers University of Technology

Fatai Yakeen, School of Transport, Lagos State University, Nigeria [Video​]       

Exploring Transport Demand Management Strategies for Sustainable Fuel Delivery Truck Operation in Lagos, Nigeria

Rokom Perme, Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India [Video]

Simulation-based assessment of dedicated freight parking slots on travel time and traffic emissions in a commercial street

Karin Fossheim, Institute of Transport Economics, Oslo, Norway [Video​]  

The political influence of cross-sector collaborative urban freight arenas on policymaking

Sowjanya Djulipala, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai, India [Video]  

Modelling Freight Generation at Regional Level using Spatial Regression Methods

Sönke Behrends, SSPA, Sweden [Video​]

The role of local authorities for the sustainable development of urban logistics

Session K - Urban logistics

Chair - Lynette Cheah, Singapore University of Technology and Design

Ali Gul Qureshi, Department of Urban Management, Kyoto University, Japan [Video]

Integrated logistics facilities of transit oriented developments and their future expansion

Joakim Kalantari, VTI, Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute, Sweden [Video​]

Energy-efficient distribution of online grocery shopping

Maja Kiba-Janiak, Wroclaw University of Economics, Poland [Video]          

Sustainable last mile delivery on e-commerce market – lesson learned from Covid-19 in Brazil and Poland

Ron van Duin, TU Delft, The Netherlands [Video​]

Sharing in five: a disruptive urban freight transport analysis​

Saha Razon Chandra, Bangladesh University of Professionals, Dhaka, Bangladesh [Video]        

An Integrated Intermodal Freight Transportation System for Handling Containerized Cargo of Bangladesh

Session L - Pandemic

Chair - Johan Woxenius, University of Gothenburg

Ivan Sanchez-Diaz, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden [Video​]       

Assessing the inequalities in access to online delivery services and the way COVID-19 pandemic compounds marginalization

Kianoush Mousavi, University of Toronto, Canada [Video]  

Toronto Area Off-peak delivery program: Before, during and after COVID-19

Roel Gevaers, University of Antwerp, Belgium [Video​]

Why covid-19 will change B2C parcel last mile network structures

Sandeep Mudigonda, City University of New York, UTRC, New York, USA          

Analysis of Impacts of Fresh Food Truck Distribution during COVID-19 in New York City

Session M - Facilities to enhance distribution

Chair - Johanna Amaya-Leal, Iowa State University

Francisco Javier Mafla-Hernadez, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Colombia     

Freight trip generation in large facilities

Isabela  K. Oliveira, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brazil [Video]         

Analysis of the relationship between the local characteristics of the cities and the number of the warehouse in a Metropolitan Area

Ivan Cardenas, University of Antwerp, Belgium [Video​]

Staying away from parcels in urban consolidation. A market segmentation study for an urban consolidation centre

Renata  de Oliveira, Federal Center for Technological Education of Minas Gerais, Brazil [Video]

Relationships among urban characteristics, real estate market and spatial patterns of warehouses in different geographic contexts

Samuel G. Odewumi, School of Transport, Lagos State University, Nigeria [Video​]       

Site analysis of major truck, trailer and tanker parks in metropolitan Lagos

Session N - On demand economy and urban freight

Chair - Sönke von Wieding, SSPA

Michela Le Pira, University of Catania, Italy [Video​]

Modelling dynamic consumer shopping choices and related urban freight flows: the case of e-grocery​

Carla Tejada, The City College of New York, USA [Video]         

Planning for the City or the Neighborhood? A study of online delivery frequency preferences in New York City

Heleen Buldeo Rai, Gustave Eiffel University, Paris, France [Video​]   

Quantifying e-commerce mobility: review of e-commerce data in urban logistics research

Jean-Paul Rodrigue, Hofstra University, New York, USA [Video]         

The Footprint Amazon’s Distribution Network: Vertical and Horizontal Integration of E-commerce Logistics

Stefano Saloriani, Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy          

B2C e-commerce and home delivery alternatives to reduce traffic flows: an empirical analysis of the Milan metropolitan city

Session O - Sustainable urban freight

Chair - Cara Wang, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Julia Amaral, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York State, USA [Video]   

Assessment of Freight Accessibility in New York City: A Spatial-Temporal Approach

Johannes Gruber, DLR, Germany [Video​]   

Impact of Cargo Bike Testing Experience on Vehicle Perception and Purchase Decision: Results from an Experimental Field Test in Germany

Pär Meiling, Göteborgs Universitet, Sweden [Video]

Challenges and risks in transportation of dangerous goods in urban environments

Seckin Ozkul, University of South Florida, USA 

Analysis for Developing a Sustainable Biofuel Supply Chain between Urban Centers using Logistics Optimization Modelling

Susanne Balm, Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands [Video​]         

The potential of zero emission transport for field service engineers

Session P - Curb side management

Chair - Anne Goodchild, University of Washington

Caleb Diehl, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA [Video

Innovative technological and policy approaches to managing the curb in the United States

Ed McCormack, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA [Video​]        

Design Guidelines for Commercial Vehicle Envelopes on Urban Streets

Simon Hayes, Parkunload, Spain [Video]

Kerbside innovation for Delivery as a Service (DaaS)

Giacomo Dalla Chiara, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA [Video​]

Quantifying the externalities caused by lack of curb-space supply for commercial vehicles in urban areas

Session Q - Policy and planning

Chair - Marta Gonzalez-Aregall, University of Gothenburg

Teddy Forscher, UC Berkeley Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, USA   

Consumer shopping & shipping decisions, social isolation, and the digital divide as ecommerce use increases in light of COVID-19

Carlos A. Gonzalez-Calderon, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Colombia [Video]     

Large urban freight zonal generators – an empirical investigation

Gabriela Giron-Valderrama, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA [Video​]          

Cracking the Freight Data Nut: Estimating Center City Inbound and Outbound Vehicle Volumes from Cordon Counts

Carlos Rivera, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York State, USA [Video]    

An Approach to Understand the Influence of Land Use Policy on Freight Efficiency

Session R - Sustainable urban freight

Chair - Jeff Wojtowicz, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Carlos A Granada-Munoz, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Colombia [Video​]     

Making liveable cities with last-mile deliveries in developing economies using cargo bikes

Diana Ramirez-Rios, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York State, USA [Video]    

Integrated Land-Use and Transportation Framework for Urban Sustainability

Matthew Reiter, UC Berkeley, USA          

Quantifying the impact of last-mile delivery vehicles on urban congestion

Miguel Figliozzi, University of Portland, USA [Video​]      

A Model and Case Study of the Reliability of Time-Sensitive Drone Deliveries

Seyma Gunes, University of Washington, Urban Freight Lab, USA [Video]        

Characteristics of a Successful Microhub: Taking Public and Private Stakeholders’ Perspective into Account

Session S
 - Sustainable urban freight

Chair - Catrin Lammgård, University of Gothenburg

Astrid Bjørgen, SINTEF/NTNU, Norway [Video​]

Planning for sustainable urban freight and the on-demand economy

Bram Kin, TNO, The Netherlands [Video]   

Zero emission zones for urban freight transport in 2025 - What will it logistically entail?

Florence Toilier and Gwenaëlle Raton, LAET, Université de Lyon, France [Video​]

Implications of food autonomy policies on short food supply chains

Ibrahim Savadogo, LAET, Université de Lyon, France [Video]           

Evaluation of the potential environmental impacts of a low-emission zone

Hans Quak, TNO, The Netherlands   

Zero emission city logistics for longer trips – including fast charging in parcel delivery operations

Session T - Last mile initiatives

Chair - Juan Pablo Castrellon, Chalmers University of Technology​

Anaëlle Pitoiset, LAET, Université de Lyon, France [Video​]          

Determinants of the food supply in urban areas by Light Goods Vehicle (LGV)

Michiel de Bok and Michela Le Pira, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands [Video]

Linking an empirical multi-agent model with a detailed agent-based simulation to reproduce complex scenarios of urban freight transport: the case of last-mile parcel deliveries

Juan Pablo Castrellon, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden [Video​]       

Designing smart loading zones

Lars  Gusig, Hochschule Hannover, Germany [Video]

Cost Model to compare different last mile parcel distribution services

Session U - Sustainable urban freight

Chair - Ivan Sanchez-Diaz, Chalmers University of Technology​

Claudia Andruetto, ITRL- KTH, Sweden [Video​]

Categorization of Urban Freight Transport Concepts and Policies according to their Sustainability Performance

Giwa Olayiwola, School of Transport, Lagos State University, Nigeria        

Assessment of Rail-Road Freights Competitiveness and Capacity for Effective Urban Supply Chain Distribution In Lagos Megacity, Nigeria

Silke Höhl, Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences, Germany [Video]        

LastMileTram: Empirical Research on the Usage of a Cargo Tram – Case Study Frankfurt

Sylvester Hayker, The Technical University of Kenya, Kenya [Video​]          

Factors influencing Active Transport (AT) to school for 10–12 year-old children in Nairobi City County, Kenya

Yngve Frøyen, NTNU, Trondheim, Norway [Video]

How do cities handle urban logistics issues and requirements in their land use planning? Empirical evidence from Norway​

Page manager Published: Wed 22 Jun 2022.