Special Issue "The Future of Smart Cities and Urban Logistic: An Application to Last-Mile Delivery"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Urban and Rural Development".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 December 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Guido Perboli
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
[email protected] and ICT for City Logistics and Enterprises - [email protected], Center for Automotive Research and Sustainable mobility, Politecnico di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 2410129 Torino, Italy
Interests: business model and lean business; smart city and city logistics; operations management and combinations optimization
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Stefano Musso
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
[email protected] and ICT for City Logistics and Enterprises - [email protected], Center for Automotive Research and Sustainable mobility Politecnico di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 2410129 Torino, Italy
Interests: Business Model and Lean Business; Smart City and City Logistics; Industry 4.0. Logistics 4.0, Digital Transformation
Dr. Mariangela Rosano
E-Mail
Guest Editor
ICT for City Logistics and Enterprises - [email protected], Politecnico di Torino, Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 2410129 Torino, Italy
Interests: Business Model and Lean Business; Smart City and City Logistics; Operations Management and Optimization

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Logistics is a key activity in Smart Cities, supporting economic growth and the vitality of urban areas. However, given the externalities (e.g., traffic and congestion, pollution, noise) affecting the quality of life of citizens, freight transportation and last-mile logistics have to be optimized to build a truly sustainable city that is also competitive at the international level.
Several new organizations and business models have recognized this challenge, leading researchers, practitioners and local administrations to propose initiatives that jointly optimize the economic, operative, social, and environmental goals of transportation and logistics, mitigating their externalities and inefficiencies.
In this direction, the integration of qualitative approaches (e.g., managerial tools) and quantitative techniques as simulation, optimization and stochastic models, becomes relevant to aid decision-makers in assessing and deploying policies for sustainable and profitable urban logistics, enhancing the adoption of DSS tools for the integration of emerging technologies in the last mile optimization process. Moreover, the adoption of new technologies in the urban delivery process will foster the creation of new collaborative business models and services.
This Special Issue aims to focus on the new business and operational models emerging in managing logistics in Smart Cities and to delineate a comprehensive concept of sustainability from economic, operational, environmental and social perspectives.
Topics include (but are not limited to) City Logistics applications, Smart City Logistics, Smart City, green logistics, new business models in urban logistics, synchromodal transportation, multimodal transportation, decision-making in last mile logistics, Logistics 4.0.

Prof. Guido Perboli
Dr. Stefano Musso
Dr. Mariangela Rosano
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • City Logistics
  • Smart City
  • Last-mile delivery
  • Digital Transformation

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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Article
Introducing the Shared Micro-Depot Network for Last-Mile Logistics
Sustainability 2021, 13(4), 2067; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13042067 - 15 Feb 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1594
Abstract
Last-mile logistics is both a source and cause of problems in urban areas, especially problems related to traffic congestion, unsustainable delivery modes, and limited parking availability. In this context, multiple sustainable logistics solutions have been proposed. We focus on micro-depots (MDs), which can [...] Read more.
Last-mile logistics is both a source and cause of problems in urban areas, especially problems related to traffic congestion, unsustainable delivery modes, and limited parking availability. In this context, multiple sustainable logistics solutions have been proposed. We focus on micro-depots (MDs), which can function as a consolidation center and a collection-and-delivery point for business-to-consumer (B2C) small parcels. This paper presents a new research idea that extends the existing MD solution by introducing the concept of a shared MD network with parcel lockers. Such networks enable multiple logistics service providers (LSPs) and/or business partners to use an MD while minimizing their individual costs and optimizing the use of urban space. We present case studies of such shared MD networks operating in the cities of Helsinki and Helmond. We provide a framework for auxiliary businesses that can exploit the existing MD structure to offer services to the surrounding population. Finally, we define metrics for evaluating the success of shared MD networks while considering social, environmental and economic objectives. The case studies highlight the complexity of implementing such a solution; it requires stakeholders’ involvement and collaboration. In particular, deciding on the location for a shared MD network is a critical phase, since local authorities have their own regulations, and residents’ preferences are usually different than LSPs’ ones. Nevertheless, if these challenges are overcome, this sustainable last-mile logistics solution has a promising future. Full article
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Article
Analysis of Incentives to Eco-Driving for Car Rental Companies’ Customers
Sustainability 2020, 12(24), 10579; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su122410579 - 17 Dec 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 666
Abstract
The problem of road traffic is one of the key challenges that cities will have to deal with in the future. It is also a problem directly related to the concept of sustainable development. Reducing the negative impact of road traffic in future [...] Read more.
The problem of road traffic is one of the key challenges that cities will have to deal with in the future. It is also a problem directly related to the concept of sustainable development. Reducing the negative impact of road traffic in future cities can be achieved through cooperation in the following areas: social—shaping customer behavior and habits, economic—changing attitudes towards owning a car, and environmental—aimed at reducing the vehicle’s impact on the natural environment. A literature review was used to identify the research gap concerning the impact of the incentive system on increasing the environmental performance of drivers under short-term rental. Referring to the research gap, the main goal of the article is to identify the attractiveness of eco-driving incentives for drivers under short-term rental. The study used the survey method. The study was based on 323 completed questionnaires (female—122 and male—201). The following methods were also used in the analysis of the results: Anderson–Darling, Mood’s Median test and Kruskal Wallis multiple pairwise comparisons. The evaluation of the attractiveness of the incentive to eco-driving depends on the characteristic of the client who rents the car. Thus, it is possible to shape incentive systems for car rental customers that can shape their positive behavior on the road. Among the most attractive incentives for eco-driving in a rented car are: the possibility of upgrading a car in the next rental, discount for future rental and free car-wash. Full article
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Review

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Review
A Survey on Environmentally Friendly Vehicle Routing Problem and a Proposal of Its Classification
Sustainability 2020, 12(21), 9079; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su12219079 - 31 Oct 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1253
Abstract
The growth of environmental awareness and more robust enforcement of numerous regulations to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have directed efforts towards addressing current environmental challenges. Considering the Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP), one of the effective strategies to control greenhouse gas emissions is [...] Read more.
The growth of environmental awareness and more robust enforcement of numerous regulations to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have directed efforts towards addressing current environmental challenges. Considering the Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP), one of the effective strategies to control greenhouse gas emissions is to convert the fossil fuel-powered fleet into Environmentally Friendly Vehicles (EFVs). Given the multitude of constraints and assumptions defined for different types of VRPs, as well as assumptions and operational constraints specific to each type of EFV, many variants of environmentally friendly VRPs (EF-VRP) have been introduced. In this paper, studies conducted on the subject of EF-VRP are reviewed, considering all the road transport EFV types and problem variants, and classifying and discussing with a single holistic vision. The aim of this paper is twofold. First, it determines a classification of EF-VRP studies based on different types of EFVs, i.e., Alternative-Fuel Vehicles (AFVs), Electric Vehicles (EVs) and Hybrid Vehicles (HVs). Second, it presents a comprehensive survey by considering each variant of the classification, technical constraints and solution methods arising in the literature. The results of this paper show that studies on EF-VRP are relatively novel and there is still room for large improvements in several areas. So, to determine future insights, for each classification of EF-VRP studies, the paper provides the literature gaps and future research needs. Full article
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