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Regional Action for Logistical Integration of Shipping across Europe

European Union
Complete with results
Geo-spatial type
Network corridors
Project Acronym
STRIA Roadmaps
Transport mode
Waterborne icon
Transport sectors
Freight transport


Background & Policy context

REALISE has been established as a 3 year thematic network involving maritime transport practitioners and transport experts. It draws together the results of the many projects around the EU which have sought to assist the development of short sea shipping. Once a current 'state of the art' is established the network will identify and develop new and successful methodologies and tools.


REALISE aims to support the development of common concepts and strategies, including the development and implementation of appropriate technologies across Europe to facilitate the development of short sea shipping.

The objective of REALISE is strongly in line with the objective for short sea shipping set out in the European Commission White Paper on 'European transport policy for 2010: time to decide', and the work of REALISE should assist with the realisation of the objectives of the White Paper, including the creation of 'sea motorways'.


REALISE takes a bottom-up approach through the active participation of key players with actual and potential interest in short sea shipping.

The network - utilising electronic as well as physical communication mechanisms - will include all the different types of stakeholders and relevant actors in the overall logistics markets.

REALISE aims to change current market perceptions of the role of short sea shipping, particularly in relation to the carriage of unitised cargoes, through a number of interlocking network activities.


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 task 4.4 has produced a tool that is capable of comparing a variety of performance indicators across surface transport modes and along identified transport corridors. A bottom-up approach, congruent with the overall REALISE methodological approach has been adopted. The tool can be used to automatically calculate the transport performance in terms of costing, timing, and reliability when a specific route is selected. The tool is backed up by data on costs and timing of transport modes available between Origin-Destination pairs derived from the previous tasks. Hence the tool is able to be updated.

Under task 4.4 efforts have been made to further investigate how external foreseen measures (e.g. Security regulations, One Stop Shop) can have an impact on the transport mode performance, and hence on the modal shift. The project also investigated other than container vessels performance (e.g. the open hatch ship) in order to highlight benefits and disadvantages of this type of ship to be compared with conventional containerships.

A detailed analysis of time and costs factors associated to ports operations was also made for a number of selected ports (in line with the selection of corridors and segments from the previous tasks), in order to compare in more detail the performance at ports and hence evaluate how the transhipment point contributes to the achievement of seamless integration of sea and land and between different transport modes.

The impact and the effects of the new security regulations on maritime transport performance and the overall performance of the logistics chain was also investigated, as well as the impact on transport performance (in terms of costs and benefits) derived if a one stop shop is implemented.

One of the main conclusion which can be drawn from the 3-year research activities of REALISE is that in order to ensure a real modal shift and hence an improvement of intermodality it is important to analyse in real and practical terms the various elements entering in the decision process of the operators. Prices and costs, distances, time, quality, cultural behaviour, etc are a collection of variables for the modal shift. It would misleading and wrong to stress the importance of price as only one of these elements.

The findings of the WP4 represent a stepping stone for a clearer understanding of the transport market service characteristics, requirements, peculiarities and functionalities. They provide an analysis of comparative tra

Policy implications

REALISE findings should be accepted as:

  • the basis for further EU policy and research development concerned with understanding the performance of the freight carriage transport networks in Europe and ensure optimal and efficient intermodal solutions for the carriage of goods;
  • the basis for further EU policy and research development concerned with developing short sea shipping and achieving seamless integration between sea and land and between different transport modes.  


Lead Organisation
EU Contribution
Partner Organisations
EU Contribution


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