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This special issue is gathered from selected papers of the 10th Asian Logistics Round Table Conference (ALRT 2020), Launceston (Australia) and independent papers submitted to the special issue. The theme of this special issue is Sustainable and Resilient Maritime Business, which consists of topics in sustainable ports, shipping and logistics, digital logistics and supply chains and resilience in shipping, logistics and supply chains. It covers a broad fraction of the field from some firm-level problems to macro topics such as cruise shipping industry. We would like to thank all authors for contributing to this special issue.
The cruise supply chain is one of the existing research gaps in either the cruise or supply chain literature. Due to the global competition and uncertain business environment, cruise industry is not long competing on the firm level but the supply chain level. Zhou et al. in The concept of the cruise supply chain and its characteristics: An empirical study of China's cruise industry conducted a thorough literature review from different disciplines such as shipping, tourism, logistics and supply chain management and 22 semi-structured interviews to conceptualize the cruise supply chain. The study elaborates the cruise supply chain through the process, the role of each entity and characteristics by comparing with the maritime supply chain and tourism supply chain. Two specific characteristics in China's cruise supply chain are particularly identified, namely the complicated procedure of cruise suppliers transhipment and the wholesale model.
Another interesting research question in this special is the causes and effects of low productivity of ship chandlers' trucks at ports under the demand of sustainable development. The findings of the research paper Enhancing productivity of ship chandlers' trucks at the port for sustainability by Essi et al. show that a lack of communications with the port, late arrival of ships, truck congestions and fragmented deliveries are the main reason of such low productivity. The research proposes a solution of an integrated system that shares real-time information with the port, a consolidation hub and a truck-pooling platform to comply with green port concepts. The findings present a new insight to the relationship between ship chandlers' trucks productivity and port operation efficiency for industry practitioners and port policy makers.
To achieve a tradeoff between the reliability of sea transport and the investment cost control, energy groups usually have self-owned fleet supplemented by a chartered fleet. Jin et al. in Optimization of fleet structure and investment evaluation - the cargo owner's fleet perspective investigate the best fleet structure and evaluate the investment scheme under the volatile circumstances in the shipping market and oil prices. By constructing a mathematical model, they work out a ratio of the self-owned fleet to the total fleet to minimize operating cost. Through an empirical study, they evaluate the ship investment plan considering the technical and economic feasibility for a case energy company. The detailed suggestion in terms of the ratio of self-owned and chartered ships in forming the fleet and ship capacity is given in the research.
Sustainable development of seaports has been promoted for years. However, few studies explore the barriers that seaports face in contributing to the sustainable development goals (SDGs). Katuwawala and Bandara in System-based barriers for seaports in contributing to sustainable development goals identify the significant barriers including the deficient collaborative policies, structural and managerial constraints, market constraints and the absence of a well-established SDGs-driven global port framework. It benefits not only the seaports about realizing and tackling these issues, but also a wider society in terms of the spillover effects of port operations aligning to SDGs, which exerts significant social implications.
An emerging topic in logistics management nowadays is adopting and prioritizing environmental activities adopted by logistics companies. Esfahani et al. in Investigating the factors influencing Australian logistics companies toward environmental activity adoption examine the 12 factors influencing environmental activity adoption by Australian logistics companies. By conducting a web-survey and using exploratory factor analysis (EFA), they cluster these factors into three groups including social and economic, pressure and governmental factors. Further, they apply a Friedman test and prioritize 12 factors. Managers of Australian logistics managers reveal that three factors, i.e. governmental regulation, fuel and energy prices, and the potential for achieving a competitive advantage, have the greatest importance toward the adoption of environmental activity. In addition to the major factors identified in the existing studies, this research identifies the new influencing factors such as the willingness to be the market leader, responsibility and risk mitigation.