Series: Focus Group Urban Logistics
Autor: Toabias A. Schönberg, M. Sebastian Huster, Tom Wunder
Release year: 2018
Publisher: Roland Berger GmbH / Bundesvereinigung Logistik (BVL) e.V.
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Download: Urban Logistics 2030 in Germany
Urban logistics 2030 in Germany - Stronger together: Keep the Wild West scenario at bay with cooperation
Together, BVL International and Roland Berger will take a look at the future of urban logistics in German cities. While in the urban ecosystem, keywords such as "autonomous driving" or "ride pooling" are the main headlines in urban mobility, urban logistics is currently much less frequently dealt with. However, the increase in inner-city flows of goods and the partly complex requirements of various interest groups (cities, logistics providers, retailers and citizens) are clashing more and more. This is being exacerbated by trends such as urbanisation, the triumph of e-commerce including new customer demands and the increasing demands of retail in the urban environments as well as noise and exhaust emission requirements.
Based on the assessments by experts from business, public administration and scientists, critical uncertainties were identified. These were assigned to two main dimensions: Regulation of urban logistics by the cities and cooperation between the players within the city. Along these two dimensions a thought model with four scenarios was developed:
1. The Wild West: Logistics providers in increasing numbers compete to win customers by coming up with innovative delivery concepts. Since commercial logistics is not a highly regulated field, innovative providers have no difficulty in entering the market.
2. Regulated diversity: The city defines and monitors a regulatory framework to manage urban logistics traffic more efficiently and reduce the volume of traffic on the roads. Strong competition between providers precludes cooperation and prevents the introduction of standards.
3. City-wide platform: All urban delivery capacities run on a single platform operated either by the city or privately on the basis of a license. The platform pools the flow of goods across all providers and uses decentralized warehouses to optimize last mile deliveries.
4. Coexistence of giants: A small number of large, competing platforms emerge that dominate urban logistics. With rising user numbers and an increased volume of deliveries, the platforms are able to pool logistics traffic more efficiently.
While the outlined scenarios illustrate the long-term perspective, we believe it's important to start laying the groundwork now in order to shape the urban logistics of 2030. It should be the shared aim of both city authorities and businesses to avoid a Wild West scenario, because abandoning all concept of network efficiency will bring a huge increase in urban traffic volumes coupled with further obstruction of the flow of traffic.
Some ways in which this could be done include taking steps within the city to create and approve a regulatory framework for urban logistics (regulated diversity), introducing integrated management of logistics traffic (city-wide platform) or promoting consolidation around a few platforms (coexistence of giants). In the interests of at least avoiding any further deterioration of quality of life in our growing cities, all stakeholders need to engage in or step up the dialogue.