Global Logistics Network Modelling and Application to the Real Field
Our research missions are, 1) to overview the status of international logistics in each country/region from a global perspective; 2) to develop comprehensive models to describe them; then 3) to apply the developed models for the simulations and evaluations on the impact of the real projects such as international cooperative policies and infrastructure investment in each country/region, in order to support the decision-making of these policies and projects.
There are three types of models mainly developed and/or utilized in our laboratory:
– Global container cargo assignment model on intermodal shipping network;
– Global cargo flow estimation and vessel routing modelling using vessel movement database;
– Economic impact of international logistics policies and future forecast utilizing international economic model; and
– Other topics.
Global container cargo assignment model on intermodal shipping network
By utilizing the network assignment methodology which is normally used in the filed of transportation engineering, we develop a international, intermodal logistics model which includes both global container shipping network and hinterland shipping network in the region that the model focuses on.
Until now, we applied the model to Central America (especially El Salvador and neighbor countries), Lower Mekong region (Cambodia and Southern Vietnam), South Asia (India, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka), Central Asia, and Pacific Islands countries. Hereafter, in addition to improve the reliability of these models, we will expand the model to apply to other regions of the world such as the entire Southeast Asia, Africa, South America, and the Arctic region.
One of our research goal is to provide the model output (i.e. simulation results) to the practical field, for supporting some international logistics policies (e.g. the strategy development of international cooperation) and specific projects on infrastructure investment, in collaboration with international organization such as ADB (Asian Development Bank) and government such as JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency). Another key point of the model development is to establish an effective methodology on data handling from various, but fragment, data sources, in order to improve the reliability of the model that the available data to develop are very limited.
*for further detail, please look through the following papers and reports:
– Model abstract and application to Central America: a MEL paper (awarded as IAME Martin Sgut Award in 2014); a JICA report
– Application to Lower Mekong Region: a TLOG 2014 conference paper
– Application to South Asia: a WCTR 2016 conference paper (for maritime shipping model); a TLOG 2016 conference paper (for intermodal shipping model); a related JICA report
– Application to Pacific Islands: a TLOG 2016 conference paper
– Application to Central Asia: in progress
Whole structure of the model (left) and network structure of the maritime shipping submodel (right)
Example of model outputs : Gateway seaports of international maritime containers to/from Central Asia and estimated container cargo flow in 2013
Example of model outputs : Estimated container throughput in Central American ports in 2020 and their changes due to the implementation of related policies
Example of model outputs : Future simulation on infrastructure improvement in Bangladesh and neighbor countries in 2030
Global cargo flow estimation and vessel routing modelling using vessel movement database
We try to estimate the global shipping route for each kind of vessel including containerships, dry bulk carriers, and tankers, by utilizing a vessel movement database which is established from the AIS (Automatic Identification System). Subsequently, we establish the methodology to estimate international cargo flow from such database, particularly for vessels other than containerships, since any other database are not available for the estimation. Also, we develop a vessel routing model to describe the route choice behavior of shipping companies by aggregated/disaggregated logit model and forecast their sensitivity to the related policies such as the change in bunker fuel price and the expansion of the Panama Canal.
Since our first challenge on this topic was started as the collaboration project with the Suez Canal Authority (Egypt) by JICA technical assistance, we published (or are now preparing) some papers on the competitiveness of the Suez Canal with other routes (e.g. Panama Canal and the route via the Cape of Good Hope). Our next target is not only to improve the precision of such estimation methodologies and models, but also to generalize them to any global shipping routes and any types of vessels.
– containership: an IJTE paper (only abstract available online)
– dry bulk carrier: in progress
World major container ports and chokepoints in maritime shipping
World containership movement (source: seasearcher）
Share in the Suez Canal transit of full-containership by region pair (capacity basis, June 2013)
Simulation results on the change in number of vessels to transit the Suez Canal by region pair when the bunker fuel cost falls (left: containership; right: dry bulk carrier)
Economic impact of international logistics policies and future forecast utilizing international economic model
Both models introduced above are assignment (i.e. route choice) models to predict the maritime/land shipping route and gateway seaports for import and export, when each shipping demand of a cargo or vessel from an origin to destination is given. However, in order to forecast the shipping demand or to estimate the economic impact of the change in shipping pattern and shipping cost which are calculated by the above assignment models, an international economic model is necessary.
We often utilize a computable general equilibrium model (Global Trade Analysis Project: GTAP model) based on a microeconomic theory to predict the economic impact of international logistics policies and forecast the future trade amount, besides other data sources on the future forecasts such as the values provided by a private company based on an econometric model (for example, see IHS website), and those estimated by the Geographic Simulation Model of Institute of Developing Economies, the Japan External Trade Organization (IDE-GSM).
The sequential forecast system of the economic model and international logistics model was utilized for the simulation projects of international logistics policies in the maritime expert group (MEG) at transportation working group (TPT-WG) of APEC and in the logistics expert group of the Japan-ASEAN transportation partnership. In addition, the economic model is also utilized to predict the economic impact of the logistics policies such as the change in trade pattern of LNG by promoting to utilize the Northern Sea Route in the Arctic Sea.
– Future forecast of international logistics by a sequential model of international economics and logistics for the APEC region: an ATS paper (awarded as the EASTS Best Paper in 2011); for ASEAN: an ATS paper (awarded as the EASTS Best Paper Award in 2009)
– Future forecast of international container cargo shipping demand based on the interview survey results to experts using Delphi-method: a NILIM report (for interview survey results); a TLOG 2010 conference paper (for estimation results)
– Economic impact and change in trade pattern of LNG by the Northern Sea Route utilization and the Panama Canal expansion: a TRB paper
Structure of a sequential forecast system of international economics and logistics
Example of model output : Forecast of future trade amount of the entire world, Japan export and China export by scenarios (in case that each trade amount in 2010 is assumed to be 100)
Example of model output : forecast of change in LNG import to Japan by utilizing the Northern Sea Route
Other topics involved
– Assessment of blockade risk of international straits by using the international logistics model: an IAME paper
– Modal split between maritime and air shipping of international cargo: an IAME paper
– Modelling a competition between containership and international ferries (RORO ships) in short sea shipping: an AMR paper
– Impacts of the Great East Japan Earthquake on industries in port cities: a TLOG paper; a detailed version (in Japanese)
– Impacts of improving hinterland shipping network of international maritime containers; an ASCE paper ( “Ports ” conference)
– Economic assessment of anti-quake design for port facilities; a PIANC paper
– Risk perception and communication in international maritime shipping after nuclear power plant disaster; a TRR paper
– Estimation of attractiveness of cruise ports in Japan from interview surveys to passengers (published only in Japanese)
see paper and presentation list for more detail