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Demonstration of an integrated management and communication system for door-to-door intermodal freight transport operations

European Union
Complete with results
Geo-spatial type
Project Acronym
STRIA Roadmaps
Network and traffic management systems (NTM)
Transport mode
Multimodal icon
Transport sectors
Freight transport


Background & Policy context

This project, called "D2D" ("Demonstration of an integrated management and communication system for door-to-door intermodal freight transport operations"), is a response to Task: 2.3.1/13 in the 3rd Call for proposals of "Promoting Competitive and Sustainable Growth", Key Action: Sustainable Mobility and Intermodality. The market for logistics management systems is developing rapidly. Globalization, lead-time reduction, customer orientation and outsourcing are some major changes contributing to the focus and interest into logistics management. Integration of the supply chain has become an important way for the industry to gain competitive advantages (Bowerson, Daugherty, Dröge, Rogers, Wardlaw, 1989, CLM, 1995). As a result, the role of logistics providers is changing both with respect to contents and complexity. New firms from different fields are entering the market competing with the traditional transport and warehousing companies. Assessing the market for logistics IT systems is a major challenge, since the terminology and descriptions of the functionality of the applications have not yet reached global standardization.


The major objective of D2D was to demonstrate how to efficiently organise and manage intermodal door-to-door transport chains, in which shipping plays a major role, by using logistics management and communication systems. Such systems would support and automate business transactions and information exchange between the different actors in the transport chains. The technology development and subsequent demonstrations of the technology and its real-life performances, has created a foundation for commercialization of the project results. The project results will support the European transport policy and inspire the European industry to make greater use of intermodal transports with more emphasis on waterborne transport. The focus of the project was the use of information and communication technology with the introduction new elements in the Intelligent Transport System. Some of the main results D2D aimed to produce were:
(a) A generic business model for transport chain management
(b) An open data model covering all aspects of intermodal transport
(c) A technical solution for a commercial Freight Transport Monitoring Services
(d) A technical solution for a commercial Transport Chain Management System
(e) Samples of “smart” transport equipment and software illustrating the potential for smart technologies to improve the competitiveness of intermodal transport


The project is structured to accommodate the requirements of the task description where the overall objective is the demonstration of an integrated and global management system for door-to-door intermodal transport operations.

Two subtasks are defined:

  1. Establishment of an integrated European door-to-door intermodal freight transport monitoring system for loading units, goods and transport equipment;
  2. Future solutions and 'smart' intermodal transport equipment for the automation of processes in door-to-door intermodal transport operations.

Hence, the research and development activities will be organised into three main activities:

  1. Development of a Transport Chain Management System (TCMS);
  2. Development of the Freight Transport Monitoring System (FTMS);
  3. Application of 'smart' technologies to improve the efficiency of multimodal transport operations.

The intention is to make as much use of earlier project results as possible, both National and EU-funded.


Parent Programmes
Institution Type
Public institution
Institution Name
European Commission, Directorate-General for Energy and Transport (DG TREN)
Type of funding
Public (EU)



The project has demonstrated how to accomplish efficient transport chain management with the assistance of advanced information and communication technology, and it has provided examples of new elements in the Intelligent Transport System. The main results of the project comprise a transport chain management system available as a web based application available on the Internet, a monitoring system, the efficient implementation of a system integration tool (communication platform), simulation and service profiling technology and tracking and tracing technology. Another important element was the methodology that was developed to show how to implement such systems efficiently in five transport chains based on the generic business model for transport chain management that was developed.


The results after completion of the project are:

·        Documentation of five demonstrator business models including a description of current business processes with respect to roles, actors, responsibilities, activities, decision points, transport documents, information systems and flows.

·        Development of a generic business model describing the role and responsibilities of a Transport Chain Manager in a door-to-door transport. The model also includes a description of how the new D2D systems are used in order to support the Transport Chain Manager.

·        Development of re-engineered demonstrator business models describing how the future business processes may be organized and performed. The re-engineered models include the new role termed the Transport Chain Manager and a description of how the new D2D systems may be used in order to support management of the chain.

·        Development of a state-of-the-art report for freight monitoring. The report includes an up-to-date review of the most well known technologies and systems currently in use for tracking and tracing in intermodal freight transport, as well as an assessment of a various applications for such T&T systems in the D2D demonstrators.

  • Development of a state-of-the-art report for door-to-door transport chain management. The report includes an analys

    Policy implications

    Integration between all the transport modes is one of the key objectives in the Growth Work Programme. This project will demonstrate such integration in real transport operations. Hence, it will contribute to the promotion of such transport chains as viable, not only from a social and environmental point of view, but also from a pure business perspective, i.e. promoting transport sustainability.

    The five demonstrations have supported the European transport policy by focusing on how to efficiently organise and manage multimodal transports. By introducing advanced systems for easy creation of complex transport chains and facilitate efficient communication with many service providers, the complexity of organising both the physical transport and the information flows is greatly reduced. The introduction of advanced tracking technology and automatic simulation and service profiling, will assist in reducing waiting time along the chain and thereby increase the competitiveness of such chains. This way the project has promoted technology that supports a shift from single modal 'only truck' transport to multimodal transport utilising train, inland waterways and ocean transport. Obviously, the main contribution of the D2D system to EU-policy lies in the field of transport policy. It takes away an important barrier to intermodal transport: the complexity of organising the physical and information flows is greatly reduced.

    Thus, the D2D system can help:

    • Preventing congestion by promoting modal shift
    • Contributing to sustainable mobility by supporting the use of less polluting modalities
    • Improving the quality of transport services by providing an innovative system for intermodal transport chains. Other policies that the D2D system may be expected to contribute to are: § Cohesion: the Spanish and Portuguese demonstrators show how the D2D system helps organising intermodal transport chains to peripheral areas of the EU.
    • Qualification and working conditions: the D2D system may improve working conditions of transport company personnel by relieving them of some of their most stressful tasks, and may also result in a need for a higher qualified personnel by enhancing quality and accuracy of information flows in the chain.
    • Environment: shifting from road transport to intermodal transport will resulting less air pollution, reduction of noise and less energy consumption.
    • Quality of l


Lead Organisation
EU Contribution
Partner Organisations
EU Contribution


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