Hyperconnectivity: the future of transportation and supply chains in a connected world
A few weeks ago, the World Economic Forum released a new report about transportation and supply chains in 2025, called Connected World: Transforming Travel, Transportation and Supply Chain. This report was developed by the WEF Connected World project in which over 50 companies have participated.
The central idea of the report is that of hyperconnectivity – the interconnectedness of everyone and everything. The world’s interconnectedness is becoming stronger, through the increase of mobile phone subscriptions, machine-to-machine (M2M) connections and the tagging of vehicles, containers and products with radio frequency identification (RFID). This increased global connectivity offers both opportunities and presents new challenges.
The report starts with stating pain points and challenges of the current travel and transportation system, such as congestion, security controls as well as disjointed travel and transportation networks (for example different train track sizes between neighboring countries). As government investments in OECD countries are falling due to deficit and public debt concerns, new technologies and innovative business models are needed to bridge that investment gap.
Four travel and transport scenarios have been created:
-New Balance: sustainable consumption and openness among countries
-Maximized Growth: further globalization and strong economic growth
-Mind the Gap:a split in society between rich and poor
-Local is King: massive cyber attacks have given rise to trade barriers and inward focus resulting in localization.
The WEF Connected World project then analyzed each scenario to identify potential solutions to future demand and challenges. 12 of those solutions are presented in the report, and 4 of them have been identified to potentially drastically change the travel and transportation industry by 2025.
1. The Integrated Proactive Intermodal Travel Assistant (IPITA)
The Integrated Proactive Intermodal Travel Assistant (IPITA) enables travelers to use one ticket per journey, regardless of the mode of transport, and providing real-time advice on congestion and route-change options. Technologies behind IPITA are big data analytics and artificial intelligence.
2. Condition-based Megacity Traffic Management System (COMET)
The Condition-based Megacity Traffic Management System (COMET) integrates and processes information from vehicles, travel infrastructure, individuals and the environment in real time to forecast and counteract congestion and reduce total vehicle emissions.
3. Fully Automated Check-in, Security and Border Control/Smart Visa (ACIS)
The Fully Automated Check-in, Security and Border Control/Smart Visa (ACIS) harnesses technology such as biometric identification, real-time risk classification of passengers, improves full body and luggage scanners and electronic visa procedures to improve efficiency and security.
4. Tracking and Transparency-based Logistics Optimizer (TATLO)
The Tracking and Transparency-based Logistics Optimizer (TATLO) uses RFID chips to provide supply-chain management assistance in the form of real-time updates on products’ attributes, condition and carbon footprint.
The impact on Port of Rotterdam
The report also sums up the expected industry impact as well as implementation challenges of the 4 potential solutions. Some of those are also relevant for the Port of Rotterdam and the port industry in general.
• Greater transparency is needed (of rates, scheduling and other factors).
• Cross-industry cooperation of various players will become more relevant and necessary to enable end-to-end tracking and transparency in the global supply chain.
• A fair business model must be defined to incentivize all players to provide their data and allow real-time rebooking and re-ticketing.
• A result of the COMET system could be using priority lanes (for a fee) for urgent deliveries.
• To allow for comprehensive information exchange, cars must be equipped with the necessary communication components. Public authorities may need to implement directives to encourage adoption.
• TATLO will enable the tracking of the whole supply chain, from producer to logistics provider to wholesaler and retailer to the end consumer
Source : Port of Rotterdam