Session #06: Rethinking Port Economics

In these unprecedented times, the global pandemic, environmental change, and geopolitical effects have underscored the intricate connections between economic, financial, environmental, and health facets of human existence. The fragility and interdependence within these dimensions challenge the conventional linear approach of 'take-make-use-dispose.'

Inspired by the Rethinking Economics research network, along with the perspectives of Kate Raworth's Doughnut Economics and Jason Hickel's Degrowth approach, our discussion aims to explore the practicality and necessity of fostering a profound shift in port economics. Our guests were:

Prof. Gordon Wilmsmeier, Director of the Center for Shipping and Global Logistics (CSGL) and Professor at Kühne Logistics University (KLU)

Gordon Wilmsmeier holds the Kühne Professorial Chair in Logistics at the School of Managment and is Director of the Project Office, of the Vice-presidency for Research and Creation of the Universidad de los Andes in Bogota, Colombia.
At the same time he is Director of the Hapag-Lloyd Center for Shipping and Global Logistics (CSGL) and Associate Professor for Shipping and Global Logistics, Kühne Logistics University (KLU), Hamburg, Germany.

His research focuses on transport and economic geography, maritime economics and energy efficiency with particular interests in international trade and transport geography and transport costs, sustainable mobility strategies, maritime transport networks and connectivity , inland waterways and inland shipping policy. In the area of port economics his research concentrates on devolution and privatization, and organizational performance and efficiency, as well as sustainable performance analysis. Currently, a specific focus is related to measuring energy, emissions and water footprints in ports.

Jason Monios, Professor of Maritime Logistics at the Kedge Business School

Dr Jason Monios is Professor of Maritime Logistics at Kedge Business School, Marseille, France. His research revolves around three key areas: maritime transport (port system evolution, collaboration and integration in port hinterlands, port and shipping governance and policy, institutional and regulatory settings), intermodal transport (corridors, dry ports, terminal development, business models and logistics strategies, also including urban logistics) and sustainability and environmental concerns (maritime sustainability, decarbonisation and environmental policy, green ports, climate change adaptation, autonomous and electric vehicles). 

In 2021 and 2022 the Stanford/Elsevier ranking placed him in the top 2% of logistics researchers globally, and in 2022 his work on climate change adaptation was cited in the IPCC report.

Michael Horton, Consultant to the World Bank Group and other financial institutions and semi-retired Vice President at Moffat & Nichol

Michael Horton is a a specialist in the evaluation and implementation of port and waterfront development projects. During his 40 years of experience in the port planning sector, he has worked in over 85 countries and is familiar with most of the major ports in the world.

Now semi-retired but still working as an executive advisor. Managed or participated in a large number of large and small scale port projects covering marine terminals and waterfront facilities in both developing and developed countries.


Christina Prieser, Associate Partner at HPC, has moderated the debate.

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