Working Paper 4 of the E-Business and Transport Project: Insights from Stakeholders/Experts

Smith, Nariida C., Ferreira, Luis, & Mead, Elspeth J. (2001) Working Paper 4 of the E-Business and Transport Project: Insights from Stakeholders/Experts. CSIRO/QUT.


As e-business is growing and changing rapidly, prediction of its impacts requires up-to-date information. This Working Paper, the fourth in the series, taps into the wealth of expertise available within planning agencies, research centres, e-business related companies and transport/logistics firms across Australia regarding current and future plans for e-business take-up/development rates; and experienced/expected transport impacts and constraints.
Responses provided to the study principals by experts in a series of semi-structured telephone interviews are reported under three headings: Freight on the supply side: will see changes in industry structure. For example, dis-intermediation with shorter supply chains will possibly lead to increased business for firms able to handle the entire supply chain and to other new alliances. Increasing uptake of tracking applications is expected soon. This will result with improved reliability, leading to cost savings for businesses due to less need to hold inventory. Freight demand side issues: include a very significant move to online procurement, increased customer expectations in all aspects, service and concerns about customers at management level having insufficient expertise to cope with e-commerce changes.
Person trips: Almost all respondents considered freight trips would be much more significantly impacted than person trips over the period 2001-2010. However, increased customer service implications would apply in both areas. Increased business and leisure travel, especially by air is expected due to increased knowledge of opportunities and systems for seeking low fares. Intelligent transport systems may increase safety and limit congestion but could also lead to induced demand. Internet shopping may have limited impact in overall trip making, mainly as only a proportion of trips for specific groups of people are likely to be replaced in the short term.
Some implications for business and government are drawn from these views. By far the most important is advice not to underestimate the impacts of e-business on transport. There was unanimous agreement that these changes would be the most significant issue for transport in the next ten years. Up-skilling, particularly for management but also for workers at all levels is needed together with new systems for assessing and financing e-initiatives. Specifically for governments there is a need to rethink their role in the various supply chains, and seek opportunities to promote regional towns as freight interchange centres. Demand management of commercial vehicle traffic will become an increasing priority, especially if a balance between economic advantage and city amenity is to be maintained.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 2776
Item Type: Report
Refereed: No
Additional Information: This research was undertaken in collaboration with the Built Environment Research Unit of the Queensland Department of Public Works.
Keywords: e, business, impact, freight, demand, supply, interview, stakeholder, expert, industry
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ECONOMICS (140000) > APPLIED ECONOMICS (140200) > Transport Economics (140217)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2001 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 05 Dec 2005 00:00
Last Modified: 10 Aug 2011 17:31

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