Collaboration in transportation
Ozener, Okan Orsan
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In this thesis, we investigate synergies between participants in transportation and distribution systems and we explore collaborative approaches to exploit these synergies to reduce transportation and distribution costs. We study collaboration in two environments: truckload transportation and vendor management inventory replenishment. The first part of the thesis addresses the cost allocation problem of a collaborative truckload transportation procurement network. We study a logistics network where shippers identify collaborative routes with few empty truck movements to negotiate better rates with a common carrier. We investigate how to allocate the cost savings of these routes among the members of the collaboration. In the second part of the thesis, we investigate collaboration opportunities among carriers. When several carriers have to satisfy truckload transportation requests from various shippers, they may reduce their transportation costs by exchanging requests. First, we focus on computing the minimum cost to satisfy all requests. Next, we develop and analyze various exchange mechanisms that allow carriers to exchange requests in order to realize some of the potential costs savings. In the last part of the thesis, we study VMI replenishment. Simple cost allocation methods ignore synergies between the customers, due to their locations, usage rates, and storage capacities. As a result, the price charged to a customer for distribution does not represent the actual cost of serving that customer. We design a mechanism capable of computing a cost-to-serve for each customer that properly accounts for the synergies among customers.