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Information technology and efficiency in trucking

  • Philippe Barla
  • Denis Bolduc
  • Nathalie Boucher
  • Jonathan Watters

In this paper, we develop an econometric model to estimate the impacts of Electronic Vehicle Management Systems (EVMS) on the load factor (LF) of heavy trucks using data at the operational level. This technology is supposed to improve capacity utilization by reducing coordination costs between demand and supply. The model is estimated on a subsample of the 1999 National Roadside Survey, covering heavy trucks travelling in the province of Quebec. The LF is explained as a function of truck, trip and carrier characteristics. We show that the use of EVMS results in a 16 percentage points increase of LF on backhaul trips. However, we also find that the LF of equipped trucks is reduced by about 7.6 percentage points on fronthaul movements. This last effect could be explained by a rebound effect: higher expected LF on the returns lead carriers to accept shipments with lower fronthaul LF. Overall, we find that this technology has increased the tonne-kilometers transported of equipped trucks by 6.3% and their fuel efficiency by 5%.

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Article provided by Canadian Economics Association in its journal Canadian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 43 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 254-279

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Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:43:y:2010:i:1:p:254-279
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