"Freight distribution is critical for cities to survive, grow and flourish, but it also has negative environmental, economic and social impacts. City logistics aims to reduce these negative impacts by efficiently managing the movements of goods in cities. However, to have a viable city logistics initiative, it is also necessary to have a viable business model."
The words come from doctoral student Konstantina Katsela's dissertation in Packaging Logistics “Towards a Business Model for Viable City Logistics Initiatives: The role of financial continuity, externalities and stakeholders”, and summarize the challenges that Konstantina Katsela looked at in her research.
– With the promise of greater employment, educational and cultural opportunities, people move to cities in pursuit of greater financial rewards. As cities grow rapidly, they depend even more on city logistics in order to plan and co-ordinate the urban freight transport, says Konstantina Katsela.
City logistics consists of a set of activities related to parcel delivery, material collection, goods storage, waste collection, home delivery services among others.
– However, urban freight transport is a significant contributor to the negative environmental, economic and societal impact. It has increased its impacts over recent decades as cities grow rapidly resulting in the demand for even more freight flows to support the citizens and the businesses, says Konstantina Katsela.
– In an attempt to reduce the scale of these negative impacts, various city logistics initiatives have been introduced and implemented, providing a great deal for research, the results of which are showing a high risk of failure that vary from the business model limitations and to oppositions from freight transport firms against the initiatives and to stakeholders’ conflicts, says Konstantina Katsela.
Any changes in urban freight transport demand new and rounds of pilot testing and regulatory approval, which can be costly and time-consuming, the dissertation shows.
– Hence, there is still a need for more knowledge on how city logistics can consider these challenges, and I suggest in my dissertation that one way to do so is through the business model, as it is argued to be a key to viable city logistics initiatives. Therefore, one purpose of this research is to increase understanding on how business model can contribute to viable city logistics initiatives, says Konstantina Katsela.
Konstantina Katsela’s research presents the findings of reviews of multiple sources, a longitudinal case study including financial and environmental evaluation as well as a comparative longitudinal case study in the City of Malmö, Sweden, interviews with stakeholders involved in city logistics initiatives, to move towards the reduction of the scale of these challenges and, thus, achieving viable city logistics initiatives.
The 26th of May at 10.15 Konstantina Katsela will defend her thesis. Opponent appointed by the Faculty is Professor Hans Quak, The Netherlands. Welcome to join via YouTube: https://youtu.be/iR8ugaR4rPs
More information about the research, contact:
Konstantina Katsela, firstname.lastname@example.org
Download the doctoral dissertation “Towards a Business Model for Viable City Logistics Initiatives: The role of financial continuity, externalities and stakeholders” in LUCRIS (Lund University Research Portal)