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ERIC Number: ED517196
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 135
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1097-6999-9
The Arteries of Global Trade: Industrial Restructuring and Technological Change in the Transatlantic Air Cargo Industry
Schwarz, Guido
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Clark University
Air cargo enjoys a special importance: together with maritime transport it is the backbone of global trade and is indispensable for contemporary globalization. Air transport is the only mode that combines worldwide reach with high speed. Nonetheless there is a dearth of geographic research that analyzes the current restructuring affecting the air cargo industry, as neither economic geography nor transport geography has paid sufficient attention to this sector. This dissertation examines organizational change in the transatlantic air cargo industry, focusing on the impact of information technologies on the functions and inter-firm relations of transport intermediaries. It then constructs a prescriptive modeling framework for analyzing current patterns and possible future scenarios for the development of the sector, applying this model to the transatlantic air cargo network. Using primary empirical data, the first article analyzes the roles of the different types of firms in performing the functions necessary for airfreight transport and for processing associated information. As the importance of information handling, processing, and transmittal has been amplified relative to transportation functions, the interrelationship between the physical space of goods flows and the virtual space of information flows has been redefined. Functional integration and consolidation have dominated, leading to market concentration and the emergence of cargo hub airports. The second article is placed in the location modeling research tradition and outlines the mathematical development of a mixed-integer model suited to analyze these changes in the air cargo industry. The advantage of this multi-objective dynamic model is its ability to determine the best set of decisions to optimize cost and time objectives, given a certain industry structure. The third article applies this modeling framework to a subset of the transatlantic airfreight market between the United States and Europe. A comparison of simulation results with actual 2008 freight data permits an evaluation of the model's ability to represent the industry, and establishes a tool for generating a parameter set that could be used to simulate the effects of further organizational change. Overall, the three articles contribute to closing the gap between the research traditions and methods of economic geography, transport geography, and location modeling. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States