Meet ICT4CART: the Interview Series, 6th edition
- Meet SEAbility: the company
Drawing on a family tradition in the field of Transport and Shipping Agencies spanning over 100 years (from 1910), SEAbility Ltd. is active in the field of intermodal freight transport (road, air, sea), shipping agencies, and logistics. Building on its heritage in these fields and by leveraging its expertise in the corresponding domains, SEAbility is also focusing on new networking concepts for better information flow, network resources management and sharing, through Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) solutions and consultancy services, covering all areas of transportation and also fields related to environmental issues, smart cities and energy, safety and security applications. SEAbility is currently promoting the use of new technologies and the uptake of novel and disruptive trends in ports, hubs, logistics, transport and mobility, such as cargo modularisation, cargo tracking, port automation, green transport, the Internet of Things (IoT), and deployment of telematics, communication, sensors and devices.
- SEAbility in ICT4CART: what is your role?
SEAbility is leading the task related to the dissemination activities and event organization. SEAB is also involved in the definition of use cases requirements, in the conduction of the Market Needs Analysis –from freight transport point of view-, in the description of specifications and architecture considering data and IT services and in the definition of Data Exchange Services with a specific focus on commercial vehicles. SEAB is also contributing and supporting the definition of the evaluation methodology and plan, the identification of the impact assessment, the conduction of cost analysis and market sustainability and the exploitation strategy of the ICT4CART project.
- The transport’s market: according to your first-hand experience, what are the main market needs in this domain and what are the requirements to meet them?
The global transportation market is currently facing major obstacles towards implementing technological breakthroughs in the sector. Digitalisation and automation are progressively evolving, however the slow pace of the adoption as well as the lack of adaptive infrastructure are considered impediments in their penetration. In addition, the lack of training in digital technologies has become a challenge for transportation and logistics companies worldwide. What we call ‘digital fitness’ will be a prerequisite for being competitive. As a matter of fact, the transport’s market needs are shaped by four key game changers, which are expected to create a disruptive potential in the transformation of the future road transport. These fast-moving trends include - but are not limited to - automation, connectivity, decarbonisation and sharing. Users’ acceptance of these trends plays a fundamental role towards their adoption. It therefore becomes increasingly evident, that the understanding of how new technology options will affect transport systems and contribute to the market needs, requires a meticulous analysis of the dynamic interactions between the demand for transporting people and goods and the new opportunities offered by these systems.
- Which step do you see as needed to ensure users’ acceptance of the new mobility solutions you work on?
New mobility solutions (e.g. automation, electromobility etc.) aim at facilitating the effective, efficient, reliable and safer movement of people, goods and services. This mobility era requires a constantly progressing technological growth correlated with transportation innovations and automation advances. It is of high importance to highlight that these solutions are expected to bring several advantages both to the public and private sector. As a matter of fact, users will eventually familiarize themselves with the use of new mobility systems as soon as they realise how much these can improve and make their lives easier. We therefore need to enlighten users with the arising opportunities that new mobility solutions can offer, to ensure their acceptance.
- What is SEAbility’s point of view about autonomous vehicles’ sustainability?
Autonomous vehicles are evolving fast, paving the way towards the mobility transformation, especially towards a more sustainable transportation. The main goal of vehicle automation is to improve transportation safety and to provide better mobility services. As a matter of fact, autonomous vehicles’ (AV) technology has important impacts for all dimensions of sustainability, such as economical, societal, and most importantly environmental. The driverless capability that autonomous vehicles offer, can be considered as an advantageous enabler of traffic flow optimisation, while at the same time it can provide a substantial reduction of the cost of mobility, which can likely increase accessibility and provide an improved mobility experience for people facing mobility restrictions. On the other hand, the facilitating conditions can lead to an increase in the number and average time of commutes, which can therefore intensify the energy and urban spaces demand. In terms of the environmental footprint, AVs can offer an unprecedented opportunity towards reducing energy consumption and GHG emission. It is commonly known that vehicle automation has robust complementary attributes with electrification. However, it is beyond any doubt that all arising impacts are directly and indissolubly connected with the level of demand and adaptiveness, while they depend on the establishment of a proactive policy framework that can maximise benefits and effectively face any potential risks and unintended consequences.
Meet ICT4CART: The Interview Series, n. 6