The objective of WP7 is to develop an interactive software device to
support real cost calculations of intermodal transport corridors. It will further allow
users to design and run policy scenarios, simulating the impacts of specific cost
This aim will be achieved through two tasks:
Design and implementation of a software module to support real cost calculations and
"what if" scenarios
The software module will include:
- a database designed to accommodate bottom-up data relating to specific chains
- a database designed to accommodate top-down data, needed for both taxes and charges (see
WP5), and reference road costs. The latter will allow for a
systematic comparison between real intermodal costs and reference "all road"
- a procedure for the bottom-up calculation of costs related to specific chains
- a procedure for the comparison of intermodal costs with the "all road"
- a procedure for the simulation ("what if" type) of the effects of possible
changes in any one of the costs components (resource, external costs, taxation) which may
be prompted by policy measures and/or by improvements in the operational management of
intermodal chains, or part(s) of those.
The design and implementation of this module will be inspired, among others, by the
structure and characteristics of the decision support module developed in the QUITS
project for the calculation of internal costs of inter-urban trips.
The effort devoted - in Task 7.1 - to the development of the RECORDIT decision support
module is mainly justified by the perspective of its application beyond the framework of
this project as a tool to assess intermodal costs systematically and consistently as well
as the opportunities to reduce them. To this end, this Task will proceed to a full scale
validation of the various software functionalities, based on their application to the
intermodal corridors analysed in WP3 and WP4.
This will allow to test the effectiveness of the system and to pave the way to its
generalised use. Validation will include, in particular, the complete calculation of costs
for the selected corridors, and the test of the software modules capability to
support the user in carrying out sensitivity analyses and policy scenarios, whereby it
will allow to simulate changes in individual cost components and their impact on total
costs. Considering the complexity of the intermodal cost assessment, and the - often high
- level of disagreement on cost evaluation and justification among the various players
(modal and intermodal operators, shippers, public authorities), the RECORDIT interactive
software will have an important role to play in providing objective and consistent inputs
to the overall debate and negotiations on the subject matter. On the other hand, it will
allow to stress the essential data needs attached to the cost calculation exercise,
feeding into the on-going process which aims at establishing a coherent data framework for
European intermodal transport (as e.g. undertaken by INFREDAT).
The RECORDIT software, complete with the necessary technical and users
documentation will be ready in December 2000 and a validation Report, including
recommendations for generalisation and dissemination will be ready in April 2001.