Table of Contents

Spatial Dynamics, Networks and Modelling

Spatial Dynamics, Networks and Modelling

New Horizons in Regional Science series

Edited by Aura Reggiani and Peter Nijkamp

This important new book provides a valuable set of studies on spatial dynamics, emerging networks and modelling efforts. It employs interdisciplinary concepts alongside innovative trajectories to highlight recent advances in analysing and modelling the spatial economy, transport networks, industrial dynamics and regional systems. It is argued that modelling network processes at different spatial scales provides critical information for the design of plans and policies. Furthermore, a key issue in the current complex and heterogeneous landscape is the adoption and validation of new approaches, models and methodologies, which are able to grasp the emergent aspects of economic uncertainty and discontinuity, as well as overcome the current difficulties of carrying out appropriate forecasts. In exploring diverse pathways for theoretical, methodological and empirical analysis, this exciting volume offers promising and evolutionary perspectives on the modern spatial network society.

Chapter 8: A Decade of Freight Transport Modelling with Virtual Networks: Acquired Experiences and New Challenges

Bart Jourquin and Michel Beuthe

Subjects: economics and finance, regional economics, urban and regional studies, regional economics


Bart Jourquin and Michel Beuthe 8.1 INTRODUCTION Until a few years ago, transport models were essentially focused on passenger flows. More recently, some freight specific network models have been developed, but their output still targets mainly transport flows on the networks, even though some of them to some extent deal with the different operations performed at the nodes, that is, loading/unloading, trans-shipment or simple transit. As a result of a trend towards economic globalization, just-in-time deliveries and road transport expansion, a great deal of attention is paid nowadays to the reorganization of networks, intermodal transport and new technical bundling concepts, in order to substitute direct road transport with alternative transport solutions which have less-negative external effects. Thus, there is a need for a better modelling of the functions assumed by nodes, that is, terminals and trans-shipment platforms. NODUS, which was developed at the ‘Group Transport & Mobility’ (GTM) of the Catholic University of Mons (FUCAM, Belgium), aims at meeting that need: it is a GIS (Geographic Information System)-based software designed for analysing multimodal, multi-means and inter-modal freight transport with all their interface operations. It is available on a large range of computer platforms and is completely open and flexible: external modules, especially developed to solve particular problems, can easily be plugged into the main software. Moreover, it implements a detailed analytical structure that allows an easy set-up of all kinds of parameters. NODUS can be used for many different analytical tasks and for optimizing various objective functions, but, until now,...

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