Digital Auditing in Small Ports

The Working Package No. 3 dealing with Digital Auditing in Small Ports is regarded as a state-of-the-art package. It develops a tool for the examination of a digitalisation status in South Baltic (SB) Small Ports. This digitalisation tool refers to a process-based approach that is applied to a given port. Furthermore, it covers different aspects that enable to track and evaluate the use of novel digital technologies in a port and its terminals and by port operators. Such technologies are already used by big companies or core ports. The aim of these digital technologies is to improve cargo flows, environmental and economic efficiency, e.g. reduction of parking-related transport in port terminals; reduction of delays; shorter travel times; safety and security (Blockchain); environmental compliance (dynamic traffic control; les congestion); cost reduction; availability and reliability; financial business concepts; client attraction (e.g. from core ports) and branding.

Once the tool is developed, it will be applied in SB small ports. The auditing will be implemented by Project Partners, Associated Partners and other small ports – fellow ports. This will ensure the use of best knowledge and reduce any non-comfortability in terms of being observed by “big counterpart” (big core ports). Subsequently, evaluation and progress recommendations will be given to ports – what and how they could improve. The ports will be benchmarked and indexed with the online Connect2Small Ports digitalisation index (also used beyond the project life).

The conducted report provides a benchmarking of the implemented digital audits and the respective results. In line with the Connect2SmallPorts project, part-funded by the European Union in the frame of the INTERREG South Baltic programme, the consortium approached small and medium sized ports in the South Baltic Sea Region. In addition, ports from the Baltic Sea, Northern Sea and Mediterranean Sea were included as benchmark and examples for other sea areas. The participating ports are compiled into the benchmark template as introduced in chapter three and indexed according to their performance and readiness for digitalization. It contains the rewarding (involving authorities) and future use outlook.

Full Benchmarking Report publication follows soon…


Development of the Digital Auditing Tool

Activities 3.1 – 3.3 Report

Development of State-of-the-Art on Blockchain technologies in Ports and Terminals

The report was developed in close cooperation with the state-of-the-art report in Working Package 4, therefore, we highly recommend to check it out here as well.

The report is based on research for best practices and knowledge as a collection and analysis of the information and materials. Furthermore, it provides an accumulation of the information to the SB region and the given conditions of the small ports. In the first stage, eight small and medium sized ports of the South Baltic Region (partly Project and Associated Partners) are analyzed regarding their digital readiness and available technologies. Additionally, a short introduction of the current state of the art for two large ports is included as digital benchmark – Rotterdam and Hamburg.

Development of Cross-Border Digital Auditing Tool for Small Ports

Performance measurement in ports has a long-standing history. Although there exist a broad range of concepts and approaches in research landscape and practice, there is no universal standard model that is applicable for each study case. Generally, the majority of performance measurement concepts have in common that they focus on so-called KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). In the context of ports, KPIs are often transformed to PPIs (Port Performance Indicators), which demonstrates the target-oriented purpose. However, the project partnership develops an tailor-made digitalization index for small and medium sized ports based on latest published innovation and maritime indices such as DiGiX (Digitisation index), PPI (Port Performance Index) and DRI (Digital Readiness Index). At the final stage, we can introduce the DRIP – Digital Readiness Index for Ports, which is our basis for the developed audit tool and benchmarking index. Within the DRIP, five dimensions with 38 related indicators are elaborated.

Development of Cross-Border Digital Auditing Tool Application Procedure

Before publishing the auditing tool and approaching small and medium sized ports, the partnership implemented a short testing phase to receive direct feedback from port representatives. In Summer 2019, four meetings between port representatives and our WP-Leader were organized for the structured interviews, namely in Rostock, Wismar, Lubmin and Haldensleben. The yielded results and remarks from the interviewed ports led to a joint discussion and initiated an improvement of the tool to its published status.