Monday, 26 October 2015 11:06

SPECIAL ISSUE - Urban policy, freight distribution planning and behaviour change: stakeholders' engagement, perception and reaction to be hosted by Italian Journal of Regional Science

It is our pleasure to announce the SPECIAL ISSUE titled Urban policy, freight distribution planning and behaviour change: stakeholders’ engagement, perception and reaction to be hosted by Italian Journal of Regional Science

Important Dates

Submission opens: October 1st, 2015

Deadline for submission of full paper: November 27th, 2015

Feedback from first-round reviews: March 11th, 2016

Deadline for re-submission of papers: July 1st, 2016

Feedback from second-round reviews (if required): September 12th, 2016

Final manuscripts due: November 11th, 2016

Planned publication: 2017

Guest Editors: Edoardo Marcucciè, Valerio Gattaè, and Michael Browneæ

èDepartment of Political Science, University of Roma Tre, Italy

æSchool of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

Freight transport systems are fundamental to guarantee urban sustainable development. In fact, their role is essential in harmonising economic growth while minimising territorial externalities so to attain a high level of life quality within cities. Territorial and economic planning coupled with effective management of freight distribution activities are necessary to foster the well-functioning of economic and social networks. City liveability is promoted by competitive transport costs, high logistics service levels, quite, clean, culturally rich, attractive and safe environment for city dwellers.

Improving city logistics performance and city quality of life depend on different interconnected factors. Modelling, planning and evaluating urban freight distribution policies are crucial activities to foster innovation and behaviour change. Under this respect it is appropriate to acknowledge that the same policy can be interpreted and evaluated from different perspectives. Taking a stakeholder-specific perspective is fundamental in determining urban freight distribution policy effects. Retailers, transport providers, local administration and citizen are commonly considered the four main macro-categories whose interests and behaviour should be investigated. This Special issue aims at providing all the necessary instruments to understand the background, objectives, methodologies and possible governance systems to deal with urban freight distribution from a stakeholders’ perspective.

The European White Paper on Transport underlines the relevance transport in urban areas plays and illustrates goals of carbon free city logistics by 2030, which are not seemingly achievable by employing the regulatory approach adopted so far. Various forms of public-private partnerships will have to be developed, adopted, implemented and managed. Stakeholders’ interactions while acknowledged as important and deep-rooted in this context are not sufficiently studied yet. Long-term relationships are less explored with respect to short-term measures, reciprocal stakeholders’ knowledge, awareness and trust need to be built and sustained if positive interactions ought to emerge and produce the desired results.

The relevant aspects considered and investigated relates to stakeholders’ engagement (e.g. methods, frameworks and management agreements), perception (e.g. problems faced and possible policies to be enacted) and reactions (e.g. evaluation methods, distributional considerations, fairness perception, etc.). Descriptions of case studies are welcome since they provide a benchmark for best-case experiences throughout the world and offer an understanding of real applications. Success and/or failure elements are investigated to discover, from single cases, similarities and differences stimulating critical reflections and guidelines for action. 

This Call for Papers is linked to the Urban Freight and Behaviour Change (URBE) Conference held in Rome, October 1st and 2nd 2015 (

Scope of the Special Issue

It is anticipated that this Special Issue will advance the understanding of the role alternative stakeholders’ engagement, perception and reaction play in fostering the definition, implementation, management, evaluation and continuous improvement of long-term partnerships among different stakeholders in urban freight distribution systems and their role in determining the needed behaviour change.

The Special Issue will primarily, though not exclusively, focus on:

  1. Pro-smart cities policies
  2. Local policy makers’ role and engagement techniques
  3. Reactions to innovative urban freight policies and sectorial inclination
  4. Bottom up involvement techniques and cases
  5. Gaming and community of practice theory to stimulate engagement
  6. Dynamic policy analysis: from inception to involvement
  7. Reactions to monetary and non-monetary stimuli to foster off-peak deliveries
  8. Transport providers’ load factors determinants
  9. Carriers’ responses to innovative policies
  10. Retailers’ and carriers’ perceptions of new urban goods distribution initiatives

Submission Method

For this Special Issue, authors are encouraged to send their papers to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. All submissions will go through standard double-blind peer-review process. For guidelines to prepare your manuscript, please visit


Prospective authors are encouraged to contact the Guest Editors for feedback and comments about the topics of the research papers. All enquiries regarding this call for papers should be directed to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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The Regional Science Association International (RSAI), founded in 1954, is an international community of scholars interested in the regional impacts of national or global processes of economic and social change.

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