Title: How accurately do experts perceive the effectiveness of urban freight transportation solutions in medium-sized cities?

Authors: Eftihia G. Nathanail; Ioannis D. Karakikes

Addresses: Department of Civil Engineering, University of Thessaly, Volos, 38334, Greece ' Department of Civil Engineering, University of Thessaly, Volos, 38334, Greece

Abstract: This study demonstrates and implements a holistic evaluation framework to investigate the convergence of experts' opinion towards implementing urban freight transportation solutions (policies and techniques) with recorded solution's impacts, at medium-sized cities. The framework is formulated based on a multi-criteria evaluation approach by considering sustainability disciplines (economy, environment, mobility, and society) and enablers (solution maturity, social acceptance, and user uptake). Enablers represent the readiness of the city to adopt a solution and promote its successful operation towards sustainability. Results show that the two data sources produce different results about the performance level of the same solutions, but in some cases comparable level of improvement. When considering also the enablers in the assessment, the results of the two data sources tend to diverge less. The findings of this paper contribute in a better understanding of the performance results of urban freight transportation solutions, based on experts' perceptions on a multidisciplinary set of evaluation parameters.

Keywords: city logistics; last mile delivery; decision making; sustainability disciplines; multi-criteria evaluation; stakeholder survey; performance; impact assessment; metadata analysis; medium-sized cities.

DOI: 10.1504/IJLSM.2021.116849

International Journal of Logistics Systems and Management, 2021 Vol.39 No.4, pp.519 - 550

Received: 11 Feb 2019
Accepted: 28 Oct 2019

Published online: 05 Aug 2021 *

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