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State of the Practice: A Review of the Application of OR/MS in Freight Transportation


  • Michael F. Gorman

    () (University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio 45419)

  • John-Paul Clarke

    () (Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia 30332)

  • Amir Hossein Gharehgozli

    () (Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University Rotterdam, 3062 PA Rotterdam, The Netherlands)

  • Michael Hewitt

    () (Information Systems and Operations Management, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60611)

  • René de Koster

    () (Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University Rotterdam, 3062 PA Rotterdam, The Netherlands)

  • Debjit Roy

    () (Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, Gujarat 380015, India)


Freight transportation is an important part of the global supply chain. As distances shipped grow and supply chains become more complex and fragile, operations research (OR) can play an important role in improving the efficiency and robustness of supply networks. This article describes the state of the practice in OR and freight transportation, highlighting recent successful and widely used analytical techniques in oceanic transportation and port operations, and barge, freight rail, intermodal, truckload, less than truckload, and air freight transportation, as well as the use of OR techniques in third-party logistics.

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  • Michael F. Gorman & John-Paul Clarke & Amir Hossein Gharehgozli & Michael Hewitt & René de Koster & Debjit Roy, 2014. "State of the Practice: A Review of the Application of OR/MS in Freight Transportation," Interfaces, INFORMS, vol. 44(6), pages 535-554, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:orinte:v:44:y:2014:i:6:p:535-554
    DOI: 10.1287/inte.2014.0772

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Yi Ding & Shuai Jia & Tianyi Gu & Chung-Lun Li, 2016. "SGICT Builds an Optimization-Based System for Daily Berth Planning," Interfaces, INFORMS, vol. 46(4), pages 281-296, August.
    2. Gharehgozli, Amir & Yu, Yugang & de Koster, René & Du, Shaofu, 2019. "Sequencing storage and retrieval requests in a container block with multiple open locations," Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, Elsevier, vol. 125(C), pages 261-284.
    3. Roy, Debjit & de Koster, René, 2018. "Stochastic modeling of unloading and loading operations at a container terminal using automated lifting vehicles," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 266(3), pages 895-910.
    4. Chen, Chongshuang & Dollevoet, Twan & Zhao, Jun, 2018. "One-block train formation in large-scale railway networks: An exact model and a tree-based decomposition algorithm," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 1-30.

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    freight transportation; oceanic; air; rail; truck freight;


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