Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Developing a holistic oil port sustainability framework : a case of China
Author: Wang, Xuemuge
Awarding Body: University of Plymouth
Current Institution: University of Plymouth
Date of Award: 2018
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
The global trading environment is changing dramatically, especially in the recent years. Driven by the increasing frequency and scale of trading, as well as the desire to meet the handling demand and to sustain development, the competition between port's productivity and the pursuits of regional and international influences is becoming significantly severe. This fact has brought, and is still bring consequences to the balance between different sections at port. For instance, the conflicts between environmental and social section issues, which are led by the increasing pressure from multiple perspectives (e.g. environmental pollution, lack of maintenance, interest parties' disputes). Under these circumstances, the disputes between economic development, social benefits, as well as the environmental protection at port have attracted many people's attention. However, no holistic framework is forwarded as a 'guidance', or 'measurement', to cover most crucial matters from every section to help evaluate the sustainability performance at ports. In the previous literature, each section has only been individually researched in terms of the current performance at port. The lack of a 'holistic framework' is a potential hinder to maintain and develop ports in a sustainable way. Among all the port types, oil port has been relatively neglected due to its relatively late attraction to people while previous studies mostly concerned about the container port for the significant economic contribution to both regional and national economy. Nevertheless, due to oil port's higher sensitivity to negative environmental impact and safety issues in comparison to other port types, as well as the incompletely fitted cargo handling capacity to the increasing trading quantity, many incidents and inefficiencies do happen in the oil port on a relatively frequent basis. Thus, it is not only needed to have a general port framework as the guidance, but it is also crucial to develop a holistic oil port framework for port operators to have a systematic and structural overview of the important factors, as well as the connections between the factors to enhance overall performance. As sustainability is the most suitable concept covering all-important aspects, this research focuses on the development of a holistic oil port sustainability framework. This research adopts a mixed methods 1 methodology 2 - a mixture of semi-structured interviews (qualitative stage), Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) survey, Total Interpretative Structural Model (TISM) panel group meeting, and Matrice d' Impacts Croises-Multiplication Appliqúe an Classment (cross-impact matrix multiplication applied to classification) (MicMac) analysis (quantitative stage) to first obtain the experts' opinion to build a practical, holistic oil port sustainability framework, then prioritise the importance of the sustainability groups and indicators for oil ports, and discover the connections 3 (both interrelationships and contain powers) between sustainability groups (structural interrelationships of, and the contain powers between each groups). A theoretical holistic sustainability oil port framework is formed first via Systematic Literature Network Analysis (SLNA). Then, in the qualitative stage, semi-structured interviews are conducted to examine the theoretical framework and develop it into a practical holistic oil port sustainability framework. The practical framework will act as the foundation in this research for further value adding analysis. Followed by the qualitative stage (interview), quantitative methods are used to expand the new knowledge range to be added to the newly developed practical framework to further ease the application of this framework to ports. In the quantitative stages, from the value adding perspective, Analytic hierarchy Process (AHP) method is first adapted to prioritise the identified sustainability groups and indicators to show a general ranking of the importance of the sustainability groups and indicators, which provide the port manager with convenience to choose the ones to accomplish when there are limited resources (e.g. capital, time, and funds). Then, connections between the sustainability groups are identified with the most crucial sustainability groups highlighted via Total Interpretative Structural Model (TISM) and Matrice d' Impacts Croises-Multiplication Appliqúe an Classment (cross-impact matrix multiplication applied to classification) (MicMac). In other words, TISM and MicMac are adopted to provide support to identify the most commonly recognised 'impacting' oil port sustainability groups in the system. Moreover, by the comparison of the empirical results from the three methods (Interview, AHP, and MicMac), a 'must have set' of sustainability groups have been identified that deserve the most attention regardless of external condition, to act as the 'central' of the framework. As a result, the empirical evidences do not only build a holistic oil port sustainability framework, but also maximise the framework's application by providing importance rankings, discovering the connections among sustainability groups, and conclude the most crucial sustainability groups via results comparison between different methods. Lastly, it is worth mentioning that this research uses China as the case study due to its representative feature of facing complicated situations after having tremendous oil relevant cargo trading quantity and the desire to conduct further development on oil ports. Thus, the theme of this study is determined as 'developing a holistic oil port sustainability framework: a case study of China', which uses Chinese oil ports as the starting case to explore the sustainability field at oil ports. Thus, the framework built in this study and its application is based on the Chinese demand.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available