In the course of changing socio-economic and ecological conditions, the logistics industry is commonly thought of as the sector with one of the highest adaptation and innovation potentials, especially when considering that logistics today is far more than the classical triad of transport, turnover and storage.
In fact, logistics has become a determinant of industrial processes in modern globalised economies and takes responsibility for a growing diversity of cross-sectionally oriented tasks in both industrial value networks and socio-economic patterns. Logistics increasingly explores service portfolios based on system solutions for industrial added value and therefore goes beyond single and fragmented process optimisation.
Thus, innovations in logistics integrate the dynamics of the flow of goods, people, information, energy and financial resources while at the same time creating novel cooperative services involving sophisticated IT solutions. These interdisciplinary potentials are expected to become even more relevant for other sectors in the future. The objective therefore is to not only increase the long-term efficiency of costs and resources, but also to gain long-term stability and robustness of the addressed development domains in the future socio-economic system.
Emerging application fields of logistics services and technologies entail the cooperative knowledge production with other competence domains and underline the interdisciplinary nature of logistics as an applied system science. This leads to the evolution of brand new expertise areas of logistics as well as to new service areas and business opportunities for companies in the logistics industry are developing.
However, ECoL transcends both technology and economics. In fact, taking up societal issues for research and development of an integrated logistics canon necessitates the inclusion of social, natural, educational and spatial sciences into the traditional, technologically or economically dominated fields of expertise of logistics. At the same time the interfaces of stakeholders from science, public policy and business as well as the civil society have to be represented in new forms of collaboration.
Against this backdrop, it is the strategic goal of ECoL to develop interdisciplinary combinations of a modern science of logistics with new topics in a transition towards blended research and development fields. In this novel approach, the concept of sustainability – in a consistent scientific understanding – as well as system efficiency and resilience-guided orientations play a major programmatic role.
Among the objectives of ECoL, the following feature prominently:
- The establishment of the scientifically accentuated brand “Emerging Concepts of Logistics” (ECoL) with a Turkish-German core within a European and international setting of scientific, economic and policy-driven communities;
- The development and expansion of existing collaboration structures into a network for key issues for the future in logistics;
- The institutionalisation of existing scientific cooperation and the increase in multilateral achievements in research and development as well as the consolidation of joint research, the inclusion in academic education, the intensification of visible transfer into practice and recommendations for political frameworks;
- The introduction of a ECoL Summer School on the basis of existing scientific cooperation between Koç University and the University of Duisburg-Essen as well as an extended network of renowned research institutions and universities.