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Topic outline


  • DAY 1 - (Wednesday, July 10, 2019)



    • Sustainability has become a core issue of organizations. In the logistics domain, the vision of the Physical Internet aims to create sustainable logistics networks. Sustainable transport in such networks will still be a core contributor for achieving sustainable operations. This paper investigates contributions of truck platooning, a means for safe and efficient freight transport, to physical internet systems vice versa. The results reveal relationships especially in the PI areas (i) connectivity, (ii) collaboration and coordination as well as (iii) sustainable, safe and secure supply chains.

    • The intention of this paper is to explain our research into the intelligent management of key network road space for road freight vehicles in Kent, to examine with foresight as technology moves toward semi-autonomy and full autonomy of Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGV’s)
      Road transport, and in particular road freight transport, is vital in Kent, 80 per cent of powered goods vehicles travelling from Great Britain to mainland Europe use the Dover Strait Port Groupi and the sector is a significant employer. Semi and autonomous technology is the future, there is a need for reliable journey times right, so we have an opportunity for innovation.
      Currently, severe disruption at either Dover Docks or Eurotunnel or in France, all have the potential to quickly reduce capacity through across the Channel. Under these circumstance HGV’s are held at a number of locations in Kent on public (this was referred to as Operation Stack in 2015, and currently both is Operations TAP and BROCK). French terminals have up to four times the parking capacity and a larger number of routes to the Port and Tunnel, the impact of disruption is less.

    • Fully automated delivery of goods in urban areas with small hybrid or electric vehicles can reduce CO2 emissions in cities. We contribute to the “last mile and city logistics” topic by proposing a case study for an autonomous logistics system for delivering packages and mail. For this purpose, electric vehicles and standardized autonomous transport boxes are used. The operator at the distribution center (DC) keeps track of vehicles and transport boxes based on Global Positioning Systems (GPS) information. The boxes are equipped with Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) tags that contain a microchip to store and retrieve the information from the inventory database records in the central operating platform. Through RFID the recipient is informed about the delivery and then authorized to open the transport box with a Near Field Communication (NFC) enabled smartphone which sends a text message to the operator.


    • European ports are currently facing the challenge of adapting to the current trends in global trade and efficiently handling the increasing volumes placed on them. The aim of this paper is to present an innovative framework supported by disruptive technologies for cargo ports to handle upcoming and future capacity, traffic, efficiency and environmental challenges. The innovations to be implemented within the proposed framework will contribute to the Port of the Future objectives regarding reduction of port’s total environmental footprint associated with intermodal connections; the improvement of operational efficiency, and increase of data sharing and information visibility; and the promotion on the innovation in the port-urban context. Among the solutions presented, the model-driven tool for Real-time Control of port operations, the advanced Truck Appointment System and the Cargo Flow Optimization tool, aim to pave the way into interconnected port systems with information at various steps of the transportation flow. Overall, the proposed framework aims to develop models and tools which can support ports to improve their efficiency and gradually participate in a Physical Internet network.

    • COREALIS proposes a strategic, innovative framework, supported by disruptive technologies, including IoT, data analytics, next generation traffic management, for modern ports to handle future capacity, traffic, efficiency and environmental challenges.  Throuth COREALIS, the port will minimize its environmental footprint to the city, it will decrase disturbance to local population throuth a reduction in the congestion around the port.  COREALIS proposes a bunch of solutions for the ports based on big data analytics; i) a predictive model for maintenance for the port of Piraeus ii) a cargo flow optimizer based on historical and current data for hingerland connection applying at the Port of Antwerp iii) an optimized Truck Appointment System based on an Estimated Time of Arrival through real time data.
      The solutions are contributing to the digitization and smart objects creation, the movement of containers and their interconnectivity and the creation of a multimodal transfer system, bringing one step closer the vision of Physical Internet for logistics.
      This research has been conducted as part of COREALIS wich has received funding by European Union´s Horzon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant agreement No. 768994




    • In recent literature, it is indicated that freight transportation via trucks is still insufficient in terms of efficiency and sustainability. Reasons for such inefficiency are poor utilization of capacities (drivers, trucks, containers etc.), high shares of empty mileage, as well as lacking flexibility when responding to an increasing market volatility. It is assumed that future transport systems will have to deal with higher urgencies and with smaller lot sizes. In course of this, the assignment of transport orders will be characterized by increasing spontaneity and an uncertain planning environment for logistics service providers.
      Thus, the objective of this paper is to present a conceptual model that combines a dynamical price prediction model and an approach for the dynamical assignment of freight flows through a network of hubs. Due to a constantly changing environment (e.g. demands, capacities, and/or prices), freight assignment will be updated continuously. As a result, the operational freight flow will evolve over time and choose the most cost-efficient route through the network by dynamically bundling and unbundling itself.
      After a brief introduction on recent Physical Internet (PI) research, this paper will give a description of the proposed model, for a continuous and dynamic freight flow assignment. Eventually, we will discuss the results and conclude with the implications on our research.

    • Multiple different attributes are important in the container-to-mode assignment in a transportation network. This paper proposes an interactive multi-objective optimisation approach for planners of those transportation networks. This approach offers a range of solutions according to her/his preferences, and offers the opportunity to seek for new ones if the planner is not satisfied with the solutions found so far.

    • In logistic problems, an Integral Multi-Commodity Network Design Problem on a time-space network is often used to model the problem of routing transportation means and assigning freight units to those means. In Physical Internet and Synchromodal networks an interactive planning approach is preferable, meaning that calculation times of a single planning step should be short. In this paper we provide finding ways to reduce the number of variables in the problem formulation, that are effective at reducing the computation time for ILP-based solution methods.

    • Environmental concerns raise the need for more efficiency and sustainability in the freight transportation sector. For this purpose, the Physical Internet is introduced, which aims to connect logistics networks into one hyperconnected supernetwork. To transport freight over such an integrated network, the innovative concept of synchromodality is presented. Synchromodality is defined by the usage of multiple modalities when planning shipments, where real-time switching between transportation modes is possible. In this work, we introduce a synchromodal planning model that constructs optimal transportation routes in a multimodal network with stochastic transit times, formulated as a mixed-integer linear programming problem. To cope with the transit time stochasticity, transportation routes are adapted in accordance to real-time information about the transit time outcome. In a numerical study, we demonstrate the potential advantages that synchromodality entails in terms of costs, service quality and environmental impact.

    • Tomas Ambra, An Caris and Cathy Macharis

      Transparency and information exchange are important parts of synchromodality that contribute to better overview of options when tackling delays, dynamic switching, and handling of unexpected events that affect delivery lead-times and costs. The most challenging aspect when making decisions in a complex adaptive dynamic system, is the ever-changing environment as we introduce more flexibility which may lead to more unpredictable outcomes. This paper presents 2 simple illustrative cases to asses different transparency levels and the adaptive behavior of assets; 1) a static case where assets do not have the ability to respond proactively to disruptive events, and 2) a dynamic case where assets have the ability to query their environmental context and exchange information. The severity of the events is captured by probability distribution functions by deploying Monte Carlo simulations to showcase the potential benefits of the Digital Twin concept in a synchromodal context. The links between current Digital Twin applications and synchromodal transport are discussed in order to spark a new wave of reducing uncertainties in dynamic environments. Lastly, the paper sheds more light on how to connect closed virtual simulations with the real physical system.

    • We provide a method to obtain a User Equilibrium in a transportation network, in which we transport containers for multiple agents. The User Equilibrium solution is defined as the solution wherein each agent can travel via their cheapest paths possible, and no agent is harmed by the route choice of other agents. The underlying model used is the Space Time Network (STN), in which the travel time of modalities is fixed and independent of the occupancy of the network. The System Optimal solution is the solution in which the total costs of the network are minimised. An approach is presented to find a toll scheme to create a User Equilibrium solution in this tolled STN, while maintaining the System Optimal solution of the initial STN.


  • DAY 2 | WEDNESDAY, JULY 10, 2019

  • Session 1: ALICE/SENSE Roadmap Workshop

  • Session 2: SELIS Workshop


    • Collaboration in the freight industry has the potential to deliver significant socio-economic and environmental benefits and is key to the development of a Physical Internet. However, until now convincing logistics companies of the business case for collaboration has represented a significant barrier to generating those benefits. The Freight Share Lab (FSL) project, which is funded by Innovate UK, offers a solution. It demonstrates that there is a potential ‘win-win’ for logistics service providers and their customers, where “coopetition” can be delivered through a collaboration platform that yields significant commercial benefits for all participants. The platform developed by FSL project partners, Heriot-Watt University and Trakm8 PLC, uses a multi-fleet logistics optimisation and decision support algorithm, in the management of freight logistics assets which, when combined, deliver a lower priced service and reduced carbon footprint than would have been achievable by the original contract holder. The business model developed by Connected Places Catapult Ltd (CPC) ensures that both the original contract holder and those deployed by the FSL platform to fulfill the contract, retain their profit margins and share the differential between the operating costs of the former and the price charged by the latter, using game theory approach. The initial results obtained from model simulations using realistic data indicate there are significant financial benefits for FSL platform members using this ‘gain-sharing’ model.

    • Collaboration in  the freight industry has the potential to generate significant socio-economic and environmental benefits, and is key to the development of the Physical Internet. Addiciontally, freight service providers would commercially benefit from the reduced operating costs achieved throuth the reduction in the number of trucks, mileage, and increased trailer utilisation, from wich, assuming perfect competition, custormer would ultimately benefit as well.
      FSL demonstrates that ther is a win-win for logistics service providers and their customers, where "coopetition" can be delivered through a collaboration platform yielding significant commercial benefits for all participants.
      The platform developed by the FSL project partners´Heriot-Watt University and Trakm8 PLC, deploys a multi-fleet logistics optimisation and decision support altorithm, managing those freight logistics assets wich, when combined, deliver a more efficient and environmentally friendly solution.
      The Business model developed by Connected Places Catapult ensures that both the original contract holder and those deployed by the FSE platform retain their profit margins and share the differential between the price of the latter and operating costs of the former.  Initial results obtained from model simulations with realistic data indicate significatn financial benefits for FSL platform members using the "gain sharing" model, based on game theory.

  • Plenary: Physical Internet answering to Retail & City Logistics Challenges


    Session Chair: Charlotte Migne, Group Sustainable Development Director, FM Logistic


    Session Chair: LUO Hao. Associate Professor & Head, Department of Transportation Economics and Logistics Management College of Economics, Shenzhen University

    Paper contributions with presentation in this session:

    • Physical Internet (PI) and city logistics are two novel concepts aiming to render more economically, environmentally and socially efficient and sustainable the way, in which physical objects are transported, handled, stored, realized, supplied and used throughout the world. City logistics is a key enabler to city economy, which has been introduced to cope with the challenges of sustainable cohabitation and development of freight transportation in the city. In the city logistics operation, bulky goods delivery is big challenge since it is difficult to delivery in the “last 100 meters” in the city. This research has been motivated by real-life problem faced by our collaborating company, which is specialized in customized furniture. Following characteristics of customized furniture industry create lots of problems to delivery service providers. In order to mitigate these impacts, the model of Physical Internet enabled Bulky Goods City Logistics (PI-BGCL) is proposed. The meta-heuristic algorithm (Genetic algorithm) has been applied to compare the traditional delivery model and proposed PI-BGCL model. To validate the effect and efficiency of proposed PI-BGCL model, the case study in this paper consists of two parts. The first one is a real-life case study of a customized furniture industry in China, which demonstrates the efficiency and feasibility of the proposed mode. The second one is to validate the effectiveness of proposed algorithms. Experimental design and a set of sensitivity analyses was performed to examine the effects of several key parameters on system performance.

    • This paper addresses the optimization of dealer replenishment decisions in planning their assortment for high-value substitutable products so as to maximize product availability of dealers in hyperconnected retail networks. To achieve this, we formalize the problem as a discrete optimization model, and provide exploratory empirical results based on a Monte Carlo simulation for a case study of a leading manufacturer of recreational vehicles. Then, we show that the proposed model achieved sales increase by 30% in a given network while keeping the same inventory level as the current business model. Emphasizing availability rather than inventory, we present the contribution of this paper in assortment planning, inventory transshipment, customers’ substitution behavior, and product availability. We conclude the paper with a call for further research under Physical Internet-enabled settings such as aiming universal hyperconnectivity in transportation, distribution, production and supply.

    • In this paper, we present a dynamic approach for designing a hyper-connected network based on the multi-plane logistic structure proposed by Montreuil, Shannon, et al. (2018). Possible hub candidates are selected based on geographical locations and historic demand volume, and a heuristic solution for large-scale hub location problem (up to 5000 nodes) is presented to reflect different consolidation preference. Moreover, we construct an end-to-end framework for network configuration assessment and update through routing and simulation, allowing optimization of the whole system over comprehensive performance indicators.

    • Although e-commerce has transformed the way products are manufactured, transported, and sold, the pure e-commerce context is not appropriate for high value goods. In these industries, products are not strictly purchased online and the role of offline retail stores remains important as it is crucial for the customers to experience the product prior to the purchase. In fact, in some industries, having the possibility of testing the products could be a deciding factor. In the omnichannel supply chain era, showcasing is then emerging as one of the forthcoming key retailing factors. A showcasing value optimization model for hyperconnected showcasing centers, which maximizes showcasing value with respect to binary variables that represent which models are showcased is developed. The goal is to ultimately best represent the portfolio of products with features that customers expect to experience. Numerical results from our case study suggest that the showcasing value can be optimized to create a more efficient and effective showcase, with 20.4% increase on average across all 17 dealers. We also reiterate that for the model to be sustainable, Physical Internet and highly efficient, interconnected networks, are required

    • In a technology driven era, star-ups have gained more momentun in the marketplace, particularly user-based platforms.  As startups develop, their logistics systems grow in complexity.  Here we introduce several components that make up a hiperconnected logistics system for Farm-to-Table (F2T) platforms.  In the examples seen in this poster we use the use case of Farm´d, a North American based start-up.  Such platforms introduce logistics that must consider both the downstream side of markets, such as urban agglomerations with restaurants, institutions, and households demanding fresh and local food, and their upstream side consisting of farms producing and selling fresh and local food.



    Session Chair: Walid Klibi. KEDGE Business School & PI Builder Award 2018

    • The concept of Hyperconnected City Logistics (HCL) suggests an open and shared system associate with multi-modes transportation to meet the challenges of City Logistics (CL). A new application of Parcel lockers is suggested in this paper which is to be used as transhipment hubs besides the current popular utilization as ship/reception lockers. Transhipment could be easily processed through parcel lockers rather than building new specific transfer hubs which are cost consumption and normally away from demand nodes. We formulate the model from the perspective of Pick-up and Delivery Problem with Transhipment and Time-Window (PDPTTW) and propose Combine Saving heuristic for solving the PDPTTW. The heuristics has been evaluated by a set of examples and show a good performance.

    • One of the main pillars of the Physical Internet (PI) is cooperation. One possible form of cooperation in freight transportation is bundling. As soon as bundling is in focus, we have to think about locations where this bundling might take place, which are, normally, hubs. So, the main idea would be that different freight carriers meet at a specific hub and exchange their freight according to some (clever) planning such that redundancies in trips are overcome. E.g., instead of two carriers serving regions A and B, they cooperate such that the first carrier only has to serve region A and the other one only has to serve area B. Even though the general idea is quite clear, details are sometimes more complicated. In this paper, potentials and dilemmas related to cooperative delivery models based on the observations made in selected Austrian case studies are outlined.

    • E-commerce has led to more small parcels being shipped between businesses in metropolitan and CBD areas. Courier routes in large metropolitan areas are inefficient due to the long stem distances and prevalence of courier companies only operating from a single depot.
      This paper presents a model for estimating the benefits in terms of reduced distances travelled by courier vans when a shared system utilising parcel lockers is used for CBD based deliveries. The model was used to predict the savings in distances travelled by courier vans when operating in a shared system utilising parcel lockers. Substantial savings in travel distances were estimated that would reduce vehicle operating costs as well as improving sustainability.

    • This paper discusses a shared mobility service that combines passenger and freight transport. Crowdshipping, in fact, implies delivering goods (freight) via the crowd (passengers). Any trip people perform to fulfil individual objectives can, in principle, be transformed shipping freight service too by using the free load capacity passengers have when moving from A to B. If widely developed this could provide a substantial contribution to reduce transport externalities by avoiding dedicated freight trips. This paper discusses both feasibility and behavioural issues with the intent of diffusing its deployment in urban areas. It does so by presenting some recent research advances related to the study of both demand (i.e. buyers) and supply (providers, i.e. crowdshippers) and discussing the main impacts this solution might have from an environmental and an economic point of view. In particular, it focuses on a particularly environmental-friendly crowdshipping service. The service considered assumes using a city mass transit network where customers/crowdshippers pick-up/drop-off goods via automated parcel lockers located either inside the transit stations or in their surroundings. Crowdshipping can play a crucial role in relieving cities from transport-related negative externalities by promoting the sharing economy and Physical Internet paradigm aiming for a shared, hyper connected, sustainable and efficient last-mile logistics.

    • To bridge the gap between the long(er) term Physical Internet vision and the short term daily logistics operations, the Dutch Topsector Logistics (TKI Dinalog and NWO) requested a research project that would provide an impulse for self-organizing logistics. This contribution discusses the development of the research project SOLiD, Self-Organizing Logistics in Distribution, that answers to that request. First of all, we describe the design and developments of SOLiD by discussing the challenges in the parcel industry and how these could benefit from implementing solutions that relate to a more self-organizing logistics system. Next, the first results of SOLiD’s experiments are presented. The experiments under consideration focus on dynamic planning and adding local intelligence to reduce handling activities. Lastly, we describe how autonomous sorting robots can be a means to achieve a more self-organizing logistics system. This paper provides new insights with respect to the considerations of designing, and the execution of practical experiments for implementing SOL as a step towards realizing the Physical Internet and make it more concrete for logistics industry.



    Session Chair: Eric Ballot. Professor of Supply Chain and Logistics and Scientific Director of the Physical Internet Chair. Director Centre de Gestion Scientifique. Mines Paris Tech. PI Pioneer Award 2014.

    • This paper discusses the necessity of collaboration in transport logistics, outlining two contrary case studies (retailer amazon and the small-structured fresh vegetables sector in Austria). We question if an internalization of crucial logistical activities might also lead to an implementation of the basic concept of the Physical Internet (PI). On a first glance, in-sourcing is contradicting the PI mindset as there is only little collaboration in this setting. So far, we consider that especially the PI community should investigate this topic of developments in more detail. If the PI, or the main concepts of the PI, could be realized via internalization as carried out by e.g. amazon, one should think about loosening competition rules. Furthermore, we would like to encourage this discussion together with ALICE via the organization of an event during one of the next ALICE plenary meetings with corresponding representatives on the podium.

    • Within existing supply chains there is still a significant potential for the combination of part and single unit loads, but in many cases competing suppliers as well as fix contracted service providers hinder optimized truck fill rates and transport consolidation. To overcome these drawbacks, within the FFG-funded project “protoPI”, a team of Austrian research and business partners developed a) an integrated conceptual framework and b) a web-based transportation management platform in order to show and evaluate the potential of the PI approach to real life applications. By digitalizing the transport management process as far as possible, pooling systems for further developed returnable transportation items (RTIs) are made possible and significant potential cost savings in the delivery process can be identified, resulting from the use of specialized transport service providers (TSP). This could be of particular relevance for small and medium-sized enterprises, which in many cases are dependent on global forwarding companies.

    • Centralization and decentralization are the two common organizations in freight transport. The first relies on a central authority who optimizes and establishes transport plans for all carriers for global- interest, while the second, presented by the physical internet in this paper, lets carriers optimize their own transport plans for their self-interest. The outcome - efficiency and effectiveness - could be different. This paper aims to use the concept of Price of Anarchy (PoA) to compare the outcome of the two organizations. Due to the complexity of actual freight transport market, this paper adapts the gamification methodology to investigate the two organizations. A freight transport game was developed for simulation. The outcome of the two simulated are then compared. The results show that the centralization outperforms in terms of global efficiency and effectiveness; while decentralization is better individual incentive. However, the PoA varies depending on information revealed.


    • Changing market dynamics force organizations evermore to share data in supply chains. Misuse of the data shared can cause major damage to the business and reputation of organizations. Hence, being in control over the terms-of-use for sharing data (i.e., data sovereignty) is a key prerequisite for sharing potentially sensitive data. This, however, provides a major challenge as data sovereignty concepts are currently mainly provided in communities with their own specific data sovereignty solutions. This faces data providers with a threat of lock-in and major integration efforts in case of data sharing with a multitude of data consumers. As alternative, a network-model approach for providing generic infrastructural data sovereignty can overcome these challenges. Its technical concepts are currently maturing. Its business and service concepts however are still under development. This paper proposes an open, service-oriented, network-model approach for infrastructural data sovereignty. The goal is to support a broad variety of end-user and service provider options for maintaining sovereignty in the data sharing processes. It uses an illustrative and representative logistics scenario and describes how infrastructural data sovereignty may stimulate adoption of sharing of (potentially sensitive) operational data as required for realizing the physical Internet.

    • The logistics sector consists of a limited number of large enterprises and many Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs). These enterprises either have developed proprietary information systems or use Commercial of the Shelve (COTS) systems tailored to their business processes. It is a large number of heterogeneous systems interoperable via a large variety of (subsets of) open -,or proprietary standards. These standards typically reflect the same data sets in distinct ways so that there is a large variation of non-interoperable solutions. As a result, interoperability of information systems of different enterprises takes a lot of development and configuration time leading to high costs, with or without using an intermediate system for data transformations. (Semi-)automatic ontology alignment may solve this issue and support organizations in creating interoperable solutions. This paper presents experiments on applying ontology alignment to logistics.

    • Improved situational awareness, also known as Supply Chain Visibility, contributes to better decisions with the ability to synchronize processes and reduce costs. It requires data sharing by events of for instance positions, speed, and direction of vessels, trucks, barges, and trains, and Estimated Time of Arrival (ETA) and – Departure (ETD) of these transport means. Whereas the data structure is called ‘event’, the progress of the physical processes is expressed by ‘milestones’. These milestones are related to (groups of) physical objects, modelled as Digital Twins. Groups of Digital Twins are those that are offered at a given time and place for transport and have to be available together at another time and place, also called shipment or consignment. Such shipments and consignments are uniquely identifiable between a customer and Logistics Service Provider; Digital Twins of different or the same shipment(s) can be regrouped into other shipments. Based on this Digital Twin approach and business transactions representing shipments or consignments, this paper presents a Supply Chain Visibility Ledger propagating events with milestones.

    • Data sharing is the core of the Physical Internet. Data availability is expected to improve decision making, thus reducing costs and improving sustainability by better capacity utilization. Willingness of stakeholders to actual share data is not addressed by this paper; this paper focusses on capabilities of stakeholders to actually share the data. These capabilities are decomposed into technology, data sharing models agreed bilaterally by two stakeholders or in supply and logistics chains, and standard interaction patterns with supporting semantics. This paper present three basic innovations, namely a decoupling of supply and logistics use cases by constructing standardized platform services, introducing business services for identifying data requirements, and extendibility based on distributed development by re-use and extension of common models.


    • Examinign an optimal configuration for the containerization level of the sourced products using a new modular dimensioned container concept named NMLU (New Modular Load Unit).
      Addresing the business case of a supply network with a set of plants, a cross-docking distribution center and a set of store zones with various demand levels.
      Comparing the transportation and handling costs at each level of the supply network for the two following cases: (1) The current packaging scenario and (2) the NMLU packaging scenario


    • Logistics businesses that handle containerized googd are forced to reduce their costs, by becoming more and more efficient.  Nowhere is this more important that in the growing volumes of fast moving consumer goods (FMCG).  Our research investigated various design related aspects for a subset of FMCG: fresh food (branded and packaged), pharmaceutical materials with special requirements, spirits and beverages that can be spoiled dureing transport.  The case studies done for this design science research are specifically selected from logistics cases for diary products like milk and specialy cheeses.  These cases are already exhibiing some of the characteristics envisaged for the future Physiscal Internet.  These extensions are directly derived from the data accumulated dureing the case studies and pertain to the autonomous and decentralized activities necessary to achieve the high level of automation desired for the Physical Internet.  The functional and physical extensions of the architecture take into account the global narute of the flow of perishable foods, the complexity of cross-bprder actitities, the heterogeneous regulations that are in formce and it assumed that will persist in the future.

    • The Physical Internet (PI) concept is going to bring a disruptive change in the world of logistics, enabling effective and efficient supply-chain operation management. A key building block of the PI is the smart container, the physical dual of the Digital Internet packet which will provide unprecedented real-time visibility over the goods flowing in the supply-chain. Internet of Things (IoT) systems are expected to play a crucial role in the implementation of smart containers, providing the needed pervasive and hyperconnected sensing infrastructure. While IoT sensor networks have always been used as an effective means to collect and transmit information in a wide range of operational systems, the modularity and dynamicity of the PI scenario introduce a number of new challenges to be addressed in terms of system architecture and interoperability. The paper discusses the solutions that are being developed in the context of the EU H2020 ICONET project to tackle those challenges, paving the way to future developments of the PI.

    • This paper outlines the approach followed by the H2020 COG-LO project to realize ad-hoc logistics collaborations. The main goal of COG-LO project is to introduce the concept of Cognitive Logistics Object (CLO): a virtualized entity that participates in the logistics process, represents different actors such as parcel, truck, traffic light, supporting systems, etc. (depending on the case) and has a different capabilities (from basic functionalities up to autonomous decision making and actuation), which are configured per case. In the context of COG-LO, a CLO will have different cognition capabilities, will be able to form ad-hoc collaborations by communicating with other CLOs using Social Networks of CLOs and negotiate optimal solutions in response to a particular event. The project will offer the necessary ICT services and demonstrate different collaborative models in both the Post Industry and Logistics Operators.

    • Major maritime carriers are globally demanding improvements in the efficiency of port operations. Cargo carried by ships must be loaded and unloaded quickly with minimal stopover time in the port. This is driving the implementation of more efficient processes and the reorganization of technologies at the terminals: connected platforms, cloud-based services, service-oriented architectures (SOA), sensors and other IoT technologies (M2M), augmented/virtual reality (AR/VR), autonomous transportation, next generation mobile networks (5G) and blockchain-based technology. RTPORT, the 5G-based Model-Driven Real Time Module, will allow a better management of general cargo resulting in faster throughput compared to traditional human-driven communications. A full reorganized mobile network (5G), connecting smart sensors with cloud resources will be used in order decrease environmental impacts by optimizing trucks movements in the port area as well as improving workers’ safety and enhance their skills with digital tools. The effectiveness of RTPORT will be evaluated in the Port of Livorno for EU Horizon 2020-funded Capacity with a Positive Environmental and Societal Footprint - Ports in the Future (COREALIS) project and it represents the starting point for the deployment of the Physical Internet.

    • Supply Chain Management (SCM) is of crucial importance for organisational success. In the era of Digitalization, several implications and improvement potentials for SCM arise, which at the same time could lead to decreased competitiveness and could endanger long-term company success if ignored or neglected. From a practitioner’s point of view, several key capabilities are becoming necessary at the nexus of SCM and Digitalization. This paper applies a mixed method approach of practitioner interviews and focus group workshops to elaborate these key capabilities. The main results of the paper indicate that the relevance of Digitalization for SCM is realized in practice. In the form of four key capability groups, a set of fourteen concrete capabilities is condensed: 1) creation of visibility and transparency, 2) advanced data exploitation, 3) strategic consideration of exogenous trends and 4) acceleration of technological transformation. The main contribution of this paper is an empirically grounded basis for future research projects focusing on Digitalization in SCM and an overview of the capabilities required at the nexus of SCM and Digitalization from practitioners’ point of view.


    • People living in favelas are buying their food locally, from small family stores - called by researchers "nano-stores" (Fransoo et al, 2017).  Most of the food sold by these nano-stores is prepackaged food, of low nutritional value, and very unhealthy if consumed exclusively.

    • The Physical Internet aims for a paradigm shift by eliminating the unsustainability issues in today’s supply chain processes. The development of the concept in recent years has shown that the PI is still in its conceptualization phase. In order to increase the attention and adoption of the concept both, in literature and practice, empirical knowledge is needed concerning how and why affected stakeholders will adopt the concept. To address this gap, we gathered qualitative data through a single embedded case study approach. In total, we have integrated 14 stakeholders with verifiable expertise in the PI. The sample consists of logistics and transport service providers, shippers and includes companies selling or working on specific PI-products. Furthermore, we gathered empirical data from research institutes with specific knowledge or projects in the PI. This paper provides insights about the adoption of the PI and in particular about stakeholder intentions, organizational and technological readiness as well as barriers and drivers.

    • Over the last couple of years, virtualization of telecom networks by separating software from hardware led to new business models. Since the Physical Internet is considered as the logistics equivalent of the Internet, it might be worthwhile to assess developments of the telecom sector and investigate its potential to supply and logistics. Future directions for innovative business models, - roles, and required functionality are explored and discussed. Data sharing is a prerequisite to realize these models with its supporting functionality.

    • Physical Internet is based on the physical mobility of logistic resources; therefore, we will try to move from an inefficient use of resources to a more efficient use of them. There is and will probably always be a temporal-spatial gap between providers and recipients. The logistics task is to plan and carry out the flow of goods in the supply chain in the most effective manner, which we can achieve by increasing the variables of Social Capital.
      Just as the information can be transmitted over the net, through the Internet, we should be able to do the same with the goods that could be sent through a global logistics network. This requires close cooperation of the cooperators (integration of processes, exchange of resources). Through our work we will try to relate the dimensions of Social Capital, the relational, structural and cognitive dimension with the Physical Internet.
      We attempte to analyse them from the point of view of Social Capital and analysing how this cooperation is between competitors, as Physical Internet demands to share those logistical networks, so that we would be talking about the External Social Capital (Bringing Capital), focusing on external relations to the enterprise.
      As defined in ALICE (European Technology Platform) we will focus on finding the benefits of social capital as a variable that deals with coordination and collaboration between the parties interested in global supply networks.