Stage 1 Stage 2 Stage 3 Stage 4
Period Up to the mid 19th century Mid 19th century to mid 20th century Late 20th century Late 20th century, early 21st century
Development rationale Rise in trade Industrialization Globalization Logistics
Main port function Cargo handling; Storage; Trade Cargo handling; Storage; Trade; Industrial manufacturing Cargo handling; Storage; Trade; Industrial manufacturing; Container distribution Cargo handling; Storage; Trade; Industrial manufacturing; Container distribution; Logistics control
Dominant cargo General cargo Bulk cargo Containers Containers and information flows (supply chain)
Spatial scale Port city Port area Port region Port network
Role of port authority Nautical services Nautical services; Land and infrastructure Nautical services; Land and infrastructure; Port marketing Nautical services; Land and infrastructure; Port marketing; Network management
Source: adapted from Van Klink, A. (2003) "The Kempen nexus" in R. Loyen, E. Buyst and G. Devos (eds) Struggling for Leadership: Antwerp-Rotterdam Port Competition between 1870-2000, Heidelberg , New York: Physica: pp. 143-159.
Stages in Port Development
Four major stages can be identified, each corresponding to a specific era in the commercial geography.