The evaluation of E-business related technologies in the Railway Industry

Tetther, Clara M. & Ferreira, Luis (2004) The evaluation of E-business related technologies in the Railway Industry. In The 27th Australian Transport Research Forum, 29 September - 1 October 2004, Adelaide.


For the purposes of this paper, e-business is defined as: "the performance, automisation and organisation of transactions, or chains of them, and the gathering and publishing of data, electronically over a communication protocol" Little research has been conducted either into how e-business technology can be successfully evaluated, or into the associated costs and benefits specifically related to the transportation and railway industries. Based upon a review of the current literature and a series of interviews held with railway operators, track managers and transportation customers from the Australian Fortune 100, the paper puts forward a framework for the evaluation of e-business investments within the railway industry. The research reported here is aimed at developing a flexible interface that enables the decision maker to assess and evaluate a wide variety of complex interacting variables. The proposed approach uses a variety of evaluation methods, as opposed to searching for a single "best" approach. Additionally, an attempt is being made to include the complex interaction between the implementation of the new technology and the changing organisational setting. A model is proposed using fuzzy logic to handle incomplete and uncertain knowledge; as well as to combine criteria within a conceptual model from which "real-worth" evaluations can be performed. This model provides a systematic approach to guide the decision maker in the deployment of e-business and emerging technologies in the industry. After discussing the main findings from a literature review on the use of evaluation frameworks in IT related projects, the paper deals with the proposed framework in detail. The use of empirical data, which was obtained transportation customers to help define the main framework factors, is also discussed. Finally, the paper summarises the main implications for rail freight of customers’s perceptions and stated needs in the e-business domain.

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ID Code: 2525
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: E, business, rail, evaluation, fuzzy logic
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > CIVIL ENGINEERING (090500) > Transport Engineering (090507)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2004 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 16 Nov 2005 00:00
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 12:28

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