• April 23-25, 2025 | Hilton New Orleans Riverside, Louisiana

Eric Johnson

Journal of Commerce by S&P Global

Senior Editor-Technology

Eric Johnson is the Journal of Commerce's Senior Editor, Technology, where he leads coverage and analysis of technology’s impact on global logistics and trade. Johnson regularly reports on how shippers, carriers across all modes, and logistics companies use software, as well as new concepts impacting core freight transportation processes like procurement, execution, visibility, and payment. Johnson is a regular presenter and moderator at industry events and webinars. Prior to joining the Journal of Commerce in May 2018, Johnson spent 13 years with American Shipper in a variety of roles, most recently covering logistics technology and leading the production of a series of benchmark studies on the logistics industry. Johnson has a bachelor’s in journalism from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s in international business from the University of Leeds, UK. He has lived and worked in Southern California, the UK, and India, and now resides in the Washington, DC, area.

Sessions With Eric Johnson

Friday, 26 April

  • 11:30am - 12:15pm (CST) / 26/apr/2024 04:30 pm - 26/apr/2024 05:15 pm

    Overcoming the Project Logistics Technology Lag

    Project cargo and breakbulk shippers have been told for years that they should digitize, invest in software, and double down on technology. But what does that mean in real life? Unlike other shipping sectors, the project/breakbulk segment typically relies on project forwarders to provide their logistics technology, most notably related to transit visibility, as part of their services. Because of this, potential logistics tech providers see little demand from breakbulk shippers. Unsurprisingly, then, there has been little progress made in the development of tech solutions aimed directly at breakbulk and project cargo shippers. There is no “holy grail” solution that can cover the complexities of the project logistics cycle from building a project proposal and costing to buying services, tracking cargo transportation, and handing off at final delivery. In fact, the industry can't even standardize and efficiently share packing lists — there’s no shared standard for this most basic building block of project logistics. Perhaps tech solutions for the project industry should start with the basics rather than trying to encompass the entire cycle. Useful, simpler tech solutions could arise from addressing shared pain points — like packing lists that don’t match up easily. This session is designed to get back to basics, to provide a forum for shippers to discuss the real-life needs vendors could address, as well as allowing forwarders to better understand their role in the technology investment quandary.