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Cities across the nation have realized the importance of collaboration and innovation for the transportation industry in their areas. Through the collaboration of industry experts and civic representatives, these organizations are making great strides to improve policies and infrastructure, and attract talent to the field.
In Chicago, the effort to innovate through collaboration began with the help of World Business Chicago (WBC) – an organization headed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel working to create a thriving business ecosystem in Chicago. In early 2013, Load Delivered Logistics and a number of other private businesses in the area partnered with WBC to form the Supply Chain Innovation Network of Chicago (SINC).
SINC is a network of supply chain leaders in Chicago that aims to help develop and improve Chicago’s supply chain, transportation and logistics industries through collaboration and strategic initiative planning. SINC provides industry leaders with an outlet for sharing knowledge and discussing pertinent issues in an effort to spark innovation. By fostering collaboration and proactivity amongst industry experts, World Business Chicago believes Chicago can become a global hub for logistics.
SINC Board Chair Paul Fisher, CEO of CenterPoint Properties, shared that SINC is considering “piloting an off-peak hour delivery incentive program, and developing a mentorship program for supply chain startups that will allow for innovation in the industry” as part of the first-year agenda [Source]. These advancements will not only improve the current state of the transportation industry in Chicago, but also create a solid foundation for the future.
Fortunately for the future of the logistics industry, SINC is not the only organization of its kind. There are a number of logistics innovation initiatives in other regions as well:
KC Smart Port is a non-profit organization leading the way for logistics innovation in the 18-county Kansas City region. The two main goals of KC Smart Port are to grow the area’s transportation industry by attracting businesses with large-scale transportation needs and to make the industry more competitive in the movement of goods in and out of the area. [Source].
New York & New Jersey
The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey is a joint endeavor between the states of New York and New Jersey to regulate regional transportation infrastructure and business. They have multiple initiatives aimed at maintaining and developing regional industry, including clean air strategies and safety initiatives for the six bridges and tunnels in the Port of New York and New Jersey.
The Metro Atlanta Chamber Supply Chain Leadership Council is an organization striving to create an unparalleled logistics network in their area by marketing to attract new companies and jobs, improving infrastructure and focusing on workforce development [Source].
The Memphis Regional Logistics Council was founded to forge an alliance between private companies in the logistics industry and public sector organizations like the DOT. The goal of the organization is to support to logistics industry through the improvement of infrastructure, workforce development, marketing and strategic planning [Source].
Chicago, along with many other cities in the US, is taking action to improve its transportation and logistics industries through the creation of the Supply Chain Innovation Network (SINC) and similar programs. These initiatives will be of benefit to everyone in the industry, from shippers to carriers. By improving infrastructure, creating new technologies, and providing better training and more effective safety initiatives, these programs will make carriers jobs easier and, in turn, allow shippers to be more timely and effective. With the help of local industry experts, innovation and strategic planning will bring about a new era for logistics and transportation in communities across the United States.