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Toward smart and sustainable traffic solutions

A case study of the geography of transitions in urban logistics
: Fraske, Tim; Bienzeisler, Bernd

Fulltext ()

Sustainability: Science, practice, & policy 16 (2020), No.1, pp.353-366
ISSN: 1548-7733
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IAO ()

City logistics as a research field offers a wide range of potential solutions and technologies for advancing toward modern and sustainable mobility. As societies demand environments that are more ecological and cities tackle the effects of growing e-commerce, innovative tools to regulate urban economic traffic become increasingly important. Based on the theoretical approach of the multi-level perspective, this case study combines findings from citylogistics research with evolutionary economics to gain a deeper understanding of the development of smart sustainable cities. The study strengthens the view on the geography of a transition with a focus on the interplay of changed practices, involved actors, and pathways. The analysis is based on qualitative social research, including interviews with various stakeholders. It examines the implementation of an app-based technology to regulate economic transport and delivery traffic in Barcelona. The municipal administration introduced the innovation in the Urban Mobility Plan and quickly integrated it across the city. The commitment of a software developer resulted in an enhanced version of the technology by a startup company. The development of the original innovation thus led to geographic diffusion of the upgraded technology through processing actors’ feedback and targeting new markets outside the city.