Discussion Papers

Franz Büllingen

Probleme der Verkehrsentwicklung und Kooperation im Straßengütertransport - Zur Bedeutung elektronischer Fracht- und Laderaumausgleichssysteme
Nr. 122 / Februar 1994


Within the recent discussion in transportation research, Electronic Trading Networks (ETN) for the exchange of cargo and loading space are regarded as a possibility to optimize the logistics management and to strengthen the co-operation between forwarding agents. The improved availability of information shall contribute to a better capacity utilization and shall avoid dead freight. In spite of these advantages, ETN has not yet become fully accepted in the Federal Republic of Germany. In this study, the role of telecommunications and ETN is analysed in the context of road traffic development. By presenting some case examples, we try to answer the question, which circumstances have prevented a broader diffusion of telecommunication based cooperation systems until now and how the rationalities of the actors are influenced by the prevailing conditions in the transportation sector.

Starting with the analysis on the future traffic development, the reasons for the structural change, and the prevailing conditions of the road haulage sector, the role of telecommunications as a solution of traffic problems is examined. It becomes obvious that the structural change in the road haulage sector not only accelerates the diffusion and adaptation of telecommunications by increasing the pressures on the forwarding agents. The adaptation of telecommunications also forms a fundamental precondition to overcome infrastructural, environmental and social defiles.

By an increasing diffusion of information technology, measures of deregulation of the EC-markets, growing pressures of competition and higher quality requirements for logistical services, ETN based co-operation will become a key question especially for small and medium enterprises. There are many indications that the dynamics of change in the transportation environment will improve the conditions for a co-operation based on telematics and will induce a re-assessement of the factors, which caused the hesitant demand.

Assessing the consequences of ETN on traffic, a broad empirical analysis within the participating enterprises is needed, but not yet available. It is highly probable that we are confronted with ambivalent effects. That means that the traffic avoiding effects of telecommunications based co-operation systems may be compensated by the traffic inducing effects.

Only German language version available.

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