Evaluation of innovations in B2C last mile, B2C reverse & waste logistics

Date: 14 October 2013

Venue: Universiteit Antwerpen, Promotiezaal Grauwzusters - Lange Sint-Annastraat 7 - 2000 Antwerpen

Time: 5:00 PM

Organization / co-organization: Faculty of Applied Economic Sciences

PhD candidate: Roel Gevaers

Principal investigator: Prof. dr. Eddy Van de Voorde

Short description: Public defense of the doctoral thesis of Roel Gevaers - Faculty of Applied Economic Sciences.

Abstract: Last mile logistics (related to B2C deliveries), reverse logistics (caused by e-commerce shopping) and waste logistics are all three typical collection and delivery networks in (multi-) hub-and-spoke systems. As a result, these supply chain parts have to deal with typical hub-and-spoke efficiency problems: low volumes and many pick ups and drops. This implies lower economies of scale than full truck loads in the line-haul operations. In other words, last mile, reverse and waste logistics are non-standard supply chain parts ("feeding networks" in hub-and-spoke systems) which have to deal with a large number of inefficiencies, but they offer a high merit for innovative optimization solutions and opportunities. The main research question is: "Can a typology be developed to list and group which specific and demonstrable characteristics of B2C last mile, B2C reverse and waste logistics offer scope for innovation that will impact substantially and significantly on efficiency and costs?"

When looking to the last mile, the most efficiency opportunities can be found in the low value goods flow. Innovative concepts should focus on how to deal with time related consumer services (ex. Lead times, selection of time windows, etc.) and the type of delivery. (attended versus non-attended, etc.) . For waste logistics, both the segments municipal waste and industrial waste offer the most opportunities within waste logistics. The focus within waste logistics should be mainly on the pooling/clustering of waste (Infrastructure & serviced/ covered geographical area). When analyzing reverse logistics, The most efficiency opportunities can be found in the segment of medium value, and more specifically in the clothes & shoes and electronics section. Innovative concepts should focus on the reduction of returned items by reducing flexible return policies.

Contact email: roel.gevaers@uantwerpen.be