The research project aimed at developing and studying a capacity function for port facilities. Implemented on the main Italian ports, it enabled the formulation of guidelines for the definition of intervention strategies on the national port system.
The work plan had the following main aims:
- identification and analysis of performance indicators for the port system;
- development of tools for processing and simulating capacity margins in a sample of ports.
The analysis (i.e. interpretation of physical, managerial and behavioural models) allowed:
- The overall estimate of the capacity margins of Italian ports;
- The definition of a general methodology for the verification of capacity margins at individual port or within a port system;
- The formulation of guidelines for measuring the upgrade and adjustment of the Italian port system in the short and long term;
- The definition of guidelines designed as decision support tool for analysts and decision-makers of the port system and the programming of the transport chains and, in general, the actors of an intermodal transport network.
The increase in sea-land transport services played a strategic role in the politics of rebalancing modal transport and economic development of the port system. The aim was to create an integrated system of links that provided an alternative to road transport, thus ensuring a more rational distribution of freight traffic and helping to overcome the problems of congestion of the national road network. The general problem has been disaggregated into subsystems, whose analysis is possible with a scientific approach. The following areas of research have been identified:
- Identification of the port nodes and intermodal as discrete systems;
- Management of goods movements with models constrained optimisation;
- Performance management system intermodal;
- Identification of tools for analysis and interpretation of the behaviour of choice. Calculation of plant capacity