- Editors’ Introduction
It has been a year since the new editorial team took over the Transportation Journal. During this one year we have seen a steady growth of the number of papers submitted to the journal and also an increase in the breadth of topics covered by the articles. As discussed in the Editors’ Introduction of the previous issue (vol. 55, no. 4), Transportation Journal is now evolving into an outlet that publishes a wide array of articles that report discoveries and inventions within the general supply chain management arena.
This issue of Transportation Journal presents a set of articles that investigate more traditional transportation issues. Individually and collectively, the articles advance the knowledge base in this important area. In the first article, Jin, Swanson, Waller, and Ozment study how carriers can maintain sustained success in the highly competitive truckload industry. They employ an econometric approach to investigate the relationship between a popular industry metric, the trailer-to-tractor ratio (T2T), and carrier performance by using the data of 828 firms. Their empirical results suggest that T2T can be used as a guide for carriers to align their competitive strategy with asset configuration. The second article, by Ke and Wang, develops an evaluation index system suitable for evaluating the characteristics of shipping centers (seaports). Their method ranks the shipping centers according to both the soft and hard environments to analyze the main influencing factors and establishes a shipping center competitiveness evaluation index.
This issue also presents two industry notes and a book review. The first industry note, by Williams, Thomas, and Liao-Troth, discusses the driver turnover issue in the trucking industry. Using the data collected from drivers through face-to-face interviews and blogs, they explore psychological aspects of truck drivers’ experiences in an effort to better understand the challenges and stressors that may lead to dissatisfaction with their careers and their decision to leave their company. Their finding provides interesting insights into what kind of psychological stresses the truck drivers experience and how these stresses manifest in their jobs. In the second industry note, Su, Cui, and Hertz utilize case studies to explore a performance-based logistics (PBL) approach to implementing a strategic partnership between heavy-duty vehicle manufacturers and the providers of repair and maintenance for these vehicles. In addition to advancing PBL in a new industry [End Page iii] sector and geographical setting (Taiwan), the authors present a PBL risk assessment framework that can be used by other companies that are considering this type of relationship.
In his review of the book From Rail to Road and Back Again? A Century of Transport Competition and Interdependency, Yarusavage provides compelling reasons to read this book. For transportation history aficionados, Yarusavage states that this book gives an extensive, helpful, and consolidated view that can aid the reader in understanding the rail and road network histories in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Western Europe.
A Note on Editorial Policy Change
We have recently adopted a new editorial policy which may facilitate the submission of papers to the Transportation Journal. Effective immediately, we no longer require the contributors to strictly follow the “contributor guideline” of the journal at the time of initial submission. The only exception is that authors are still required to ensure that their information, such as name and affiliation, appear only in the title page, and not in the main body of manuscript to facilitate the blind review process. This means that authors can now submit their papers to the Transportation Journal without fully complying with the style and formatting guidelines. However, the authors are required to strictly follow the style and formatting guidelines when submitting revisions. We hope that this new policy, which removes possible formatting burdens from contributors at the time of initial submission, will encourage many researchers to consider submitting their best works to the Transportation Journal.
Yoshi Suzuki and Mary Holcomb, Co-Editors [End Page iv]