This paper presented an in-depth study of the rapidly changing and growing field of last-mile logistics for e-commerce through a current analysis of last-mile deliveries in New York City andother dense urban areas. Based on stakeholder interviews and secondary research, the Capstone team constructed a last-mile logistics supply chain model which flows through four major stages: fulfillment centers, delivery planning, delivery execution, and final 50-feet.
At each of these stages, the paper highlighted the current optimization strategies, technologies and regulations, which has the largest impact an e-commerce order’s delivery. The Capstone team first looked at operations research and big data, and artificial intelligence techniques used to optimize the delivery process. Second, the paper analyzed the emerging hardware and software technologies bringing some of the former strategies to life. Finally, the paper examined relevant regulations addressing externalities which were specific to each step of the process. After walking through each step of the supply chain, the final section of this paper outlined policies and regulations that broadly encompass the e-commerce supply chain and foster private sector development while also protecting citizens and the urban environment. Considering the paper’s findings, final recommendations were directed towards both private actors and policymakers.