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Sustainable Organisation between Clusters Of Optimised Logistics @ Europe

European Union
Complete with results
Total project cost
€2 829 398
EU Contribution
€2 528 017
Project website
Project Acronym
STRIA Roadmaps
Network and traffic management systems (NTM)
Transport mode
Multimodal icon
Transport policies
Societal/Economic issues
Transport sectors
Freight transport


Call for proposal
Link to CORDIS
Background & Policy context

Europe has a central and leading position in the worldwide flows of transport, logistics and supply chains. Transport is also an essential component of the European economy, with the industry accounting for about 7% of the EU GDP and 5% of total EU employment. The chain of production and trade cannot operate without the numerous logistical hubs throughout Europe: they are vital to a well-functioning economy.

Global developments in transport and logistics, such as the continuous growth in world trade, the expansion of ‘sourcing’ areas as well as the economic growth of user’ markets alongside the stronger competitive position of emerging markets ask for cost-efficiency, flexibility and agility of the European transport and logistics sector. Within Europe, increasing individual wishes and demands of companies and consumers and the social urge to limit negative external environmental effects, cause an increase in complexity and dynamics in the logistic chains. Thus far, the (conflicting) demands have resulted in a suboptimal European transport system, which is also causing societal challenges, for example:

  • Sustainability issues, such as noise and CO2, aerosols, CxHy, NOx and SO2 emissions (with global, regional or local environmental and health effects);
  • Diminishing (fossil and carbon based) energy dependency;
  • High (user) demands with respect to cost-efficiency, reliability, safety and security;
  • Accessibility and congestion, mainly in and around large conurbations adjacent to hubs and gateways;
  • Decreasing quality of life, amongst others physical safety, hindrance and spatial separation.

To face these challenges, innovations (i.e. really implemented new concepts and ideas) are needed – innovations of the transport sector itself (logistics concepts, transport modes, infrastructures), innovations within supporting ICT and energy systems, and innovations with respect to legislation, public-private cooperation and governance.

The challenges mentioned above have been recognised by Europe as demonstrated by several policy documents such as the White Paper on Transport 2000, the PPP "European Green Cars Initiatives", the flagship "Innovation Union" and the European strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth - Europe 2020. The new White Paper under preparation will among others focus on a competitive, innovative and environmentally-friendly industry and the removing of bottlenecks and barriers to transpor


Strategic Objective

SoCool@EU aims to create an open European platform of excellence in the area of supply chain management and logistics in connection with hubs and gateways that will be open for participation by other regional clusters with a logistics and transportation profile after its establishment. Its purpose is to enable research-driven regional clusters throughout Europe to collaborate and exchange experiences for increasing sustainability and competitiveness of logistical services and intermodal transport operations.

Operational Objectives

SoCool@EU operational objectives are the following:

  • Fostering trans-national cooperation between research-driven clusters as well as mutual learning between regional actors. The clusters will work in the areas of interconnecting major EU gateways and hubs for sustainable intermodal transport; mitigating local and regional effects of major hub activities and coordinate involved actors; increasing logistics added value without increasing transport and traffic volumes; enhancing environmental and economic efficiency of urban freight transport and logistics.
  • Developing and implementing joint action plans at the European level to increase regional economic competitiveness. These action plans will support and drive the creation of the EU policies within intermodal transportation and co-modality and the creation of knowledge that will allow Europe to increase its economic growth without increasing its CO2 emissions.
  • Supporting the internationalization of the regional research-driven clusters. SoCool@EU has been set up as a starting point and will evolve into an open European platform of excellence that will contribute to the internationalization of regional clusters and the importance of research.
  • Mentoring regions with a less developed research profile. The cluster platform will be created by highly developed regions that will offer mentoring to regions with a less developed research profile, share knowledge and provide access to a network of clusters beyond SoCool@EU to support their capacity building.

From an overarching perspective, the work plan of the project as a whole has been designated to realise a sustainable Joint Action Plan and a Business Plan that will support innovation and research policies in transport and logistics, in the years to come. Necessary information will be gathered as a basis for this JAP and an analysis and mapping of the research agenda’s and the actors involved will be carried out in the participating regions. The analysis results will be the input to start defining the JAP and elements of this output will also be used for the purpose of knowledge exchange with the mentoring region. The project results will be disseminated as early as possible within the project. Following concrete measures for the implementation of the JAP will be elaborated and will again serve to support the mentoring region. Finally, a Business Plan that will include concrete project ideas and funding options will be developed.


Parent Programmes
Other Programme
Framework Programme 7 - funded by the Regions of Knowledge initiative (FP7-REGIONS-2011-1) of the 7th Framework Programme of the European Commission


Optimising logistics through transnational cooperation

Optimising logistics through transnational cooperation

Improved efficiency and sustainability of European supply chains, logistics, and intermodal transport have the potential to greatly benefit businesses and regional economic competitiveness. Such goals are to be achieved through transnational cooperation and an increased pool of European research and innovation from which to draw knowledge and experience.

The project 'Sustainable organisation between clusters of optimised logistics @ Europe' ( (SOCOOL@EU)) aims to enable research-driven regional clusters throughout Europe. The goal is to collaborate, further R & D, and implement joint projects in an effort to achieve logistics optimisation. The project is comprised of six groups, each contributing to the project's overall goals.

Strong project management focused on analysis of the involved logistics and transport clusters. Online questionnaires and desk research were some of the tools used for analysis. The results have been presented in a report offering important insights into this area of investigation.

Another part of the project focused on defining the joint action plan, with three deliverables having already been produced. The consortium has defined 6 fields of joint action and 11 project proposals in these fields.

Continued work on implementation of the joint action plan has seen the creation of an executive master programme. This is to be executed in cooperation with certain universities in order to exchange knowledge between regions and potential partners. Other project work involves mentoring less-developed regions, finalising two deliverables, and the development of a Mentoring Action Plan.

Successful continuation of the project's dissemination strategy most recently included establishing a regional user group and organising eight cluster workshops. The consortium partners also attended around 16 external national and international events to promote the project and its results.


Lead Organisation
Stichting Dutch Institute For Advanced Logistics
Organisation website
EU Contribution
€776 380
Partner Organisations
House Of Logistics & Mobility (Holm) Gmbh
Organisation website
EU Contribution
€605 312
Asociacion Logistica Innovadora De Aragon
EU Contribution
€473 421
Lund University, Department Of Technology And Society
Paradisgatan 5, 22100 LUND, Sweden
Organisation website
EU Contribution
€504 705
Mersin Ticaret Ve Sanayi Odasi
Organisation website
EU Contribution
€168 199


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