Effects of hinterland accessibility on US container port efficiency

Yulai Wan, Andrew Chi Lok Yuen, Anming Zhang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


As the bottleneck of intermodal transportation systems has shifted from the ship/port interface to the port/inland interface, container port productivity is likely to be constrained by the connection between ports and hinterlands (Heaver, 2006). This study empirically explores the impacts of hinterland accessibility on efficiency of US container ports. A two-stage approach is implemented. First, the container port efficiency is measured by data envelopment analysis (DEA). Then, Tobit regression analysis is undertaken to explore the relationship between DEA scores and ground transportation conditions. The results suggest that provision of on-dock rail facility at container terminals is negatively correlated with container port efficiency, whilst the impacts of Class I rail services are ambiguous. In general, there is a negative association between road congestion around the port and port productivity. However, this relationship tends to be negligible or even positive for primary ports of entry which enjoy substantially larger container throughput volume.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)422-440
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Shipping and Transport Logistics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • Container port productivity
  • Data envelopment analysis
  • DEA
  • Hinterland accessibility
  • On-dock rail facility
  • Rail services
  • Road congestion
  • Tobit
  • USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Transportation
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

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