The 8th annual International Physical Internet Conference – IPIC2021, organised by ALICE - the European Technology Platform ALICE and I-SENSE Group of the ICCS – the Institute of Communication and Computer Systems , took place online on June 14-16, 2021. With a fully booked attendance of more than 400 participants from around the world, the conference deployed an ambitious programme of 32 sessions in 7 parallel streams and brought more than 150 top-notch speakers from industry, international institutions, the research community, policy makers, standardization committees, Ph.D. students and other key actors in the transport, supply chain and logistics community who contributed to an open discussion on the challenges, opportunities and the future of the freight transport and logistics sectors.
The 8th annual International Physical Internet Conference – IPIC2021 is the world's leading Conference focusing on the future of global freight and logistics industry and this year was dedicated to ‘building a smart hyperconnected era for efficient transport, supply chain and logistics’ with an emphasis on ALICE Physical Internet Roadmap Implementation and Generations. Among other interesting topics, the conference presented practical examples of pioneer industries developing open standard processes and protocols to support interoperability and digitalization of services in logistics, supply chains and transport. Technological innovations such as AI, IoT, Blockchain Big Date can pave the way for supply chains to become smarter, more autonomous and more secure. Such innovations can lead to building a more efficient and sustainable future Physical Internet Ecosystem.
The 8th edition of the International Physical Internet Conference also explored supply chain strategies to help companies face current challenges. Particular reference was made to the Covid-19 challenge as a powerful call to action and real-time transformation of the processes, where Physical Internet could be perfectly implemented in response. Special Sessions were dedicated to the role of ports and airports as Physical Internet core enablers. Models and tools to support and manage virtual ports and the implementation of the PI concept at air cargo as well as to participate in a complete Physical Internet network were also presented.
The topics of the Conference were also related to the European Commission’s ambition regarding substantial Modal Shift and Zero-Emission, one of the main targets of the EC Green Deal, which cannot be materialised without adopting and implementing the ideas and principles of the Physical Internet. The Conference speakers also stressed the importance of shared codes, standards, traceability, and contractual commitment and collaboration between all players involved in the logistics sector, from private shipping giants to international associations, SMEs, and start-ups.
IPIC2021 has provided valuable networking opportunities, knowledge sharing and contributions to the ongoing discussions about the future of the Physical Internet. The conference was accompanied by an exhibition of 27 leading technology companies, and posters with innovative products, applications, services and research results. In addition, during the Start-ups and Ventures elevator pitch session a number of companies participated by presenting their business case based on the concepts of the Physical Internet.
The 8th annual International Physical Internet Conference – IPIC2021 is the world's leading Conference focusing on the future of global freight and logistics industry and this year was supported by the Gold Sponsorships of ERTICO – Intelligent Technology Systems Europe and Euralogistic and the Silver Sponsorship of ICCS. The Conference was also supported by the following Partners and Projects TRANSPOREON, 5GLOGINNOV, FENIX, LOGISTAR, EU AFRICA DIGILOGIC, DISpATch, HARMONY, NWO, AWARD., HARMONY, PhysICAL, and PILL.
The next IPIC conference is planned to take place next June 2023 in Athens, Greece, hopefully in a physical format.