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Drones in last-mile delivery: a systematic literature review from a logistics management perspective

Amer Jazairy (Department of Maritime Business Adminstration, Texas A&M University, Galveston, Texas, USA)
Emil Persson (Department of Industrial Management, Industrial Design and Mechanical Engineering, University of Gävle, Gävle, Sweden)
Mazen Brho (Department of Maritime Business Adminstration, Texas A&M University, Galveston, Texas, USA)
Robin von Haartman (Department of Industrial Management, Industrial Design and Mechanical Engineering, University of Gävle, Gävle, Sweden)
Per Hilletofth (Department of Industrial Management, Industrial Design and Mechanical Engineering, University of Gävle, Gävle, Sweden)

The International Journal of Logistics Management

ISSN: 0957-4093

Article publication date: 13 February 2024

463

Abstract

Purpose

This study presents a systematic literature review (SLR) of the interdisciplinary literature on drones in last-mile delivery (LMD) to extrapolate pertinent insights from and into the logistics management field.

Design/methodology/approach

Rooting their analytical categories in the LMD literature, the authors performed a deductive, theory refinement SLR on 307 interdisciplinary journal articles published during 2015–2022 to integrate this emergent phenomenon into the field.

Findings

The authors derived the potentials, challenges and solutions of drone deliveries in relation to 12 LMD criteria dispersed across four stakeholder groups: senders, receivers, regulators and societies. Relationships between these criteria were also identified.

Research limitations/implications

This review contributes to logistics management by offering a current, nuanced and multifaceted discussion of drones' potential to improve the LMD process together with the challenges and solutions involved.

Practical implications

The authors provide logistics managers with a holistic roadmap to help them make informed decisions about adopting drones in their delivery systems. Regulators and society members also gain insights into the prospects, requirements and repercussions of drone deliveries.

Originality/value

This is one of the first SLRs on drone applications in LMD from a logistics management perspective.

Keywords

Citation

Jazairy, A., Persson, E., Brho, M., von Haartman, R. and Hilletofth, P. (2024), "Drones in last-mile delivery: a systematic literature review from a logistics management perspective", The International Journal of Logistics Management, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJLM-04-2023-0149

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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