Cruise & Ferry Review - Spring/Summer 2024

118 FEATURE Nautical mastery With new technologies, fuels and regulations among the many changes on the horizon for the passenger shipping industry, Alex Smith asks Captain John Lloyd of The Nautical Institute how the organisation is helping seafarers prepare for the future The maritime industry is constantly changing and evolving. Navigators have to keep up to date with the latest systems and technologies, monitor new regulatory changes and manage vast silos of information, all of which are time-consuming tasks that are essential to ensure safe and efficient shipping operations. One organisation helping to support seafarers as they manage the demands of the industry is The Nautical Institute. The international non-governmental organisation represents the interests of its members around the world, aiming to improve standards in seafaring with effective education, regulation and cooperation. “As we work with our members and our industry stakeholders, we take on the challenges faced by maritime professionals, including decarbonisation; automation and autonomy; and artificial intelligence and its impact on the workforce,” says Captain John Lloyd, CEO of The Nautical Institute. “We address these areas from the perspective of the mariner, providing opportunities for training and professional development solutions to ensure safer and more effective maritime operations.” The Nautical Institute also represents maritime professionals at the International Maritime Organization, where it holds consultative status. This status allows The Nautical Institute to contribute the opinions of its members while the IMO is shaping key regulations for the global shipping industry that impact more than three million seafarers employed to work on the international merchant fleet. One important piece of regulation currently under review by the IMO is The International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (SCTW), which governs the competence standards and certification requirements for the world’s seafarers. The Nautical Institute is looking to its members to establish their priorities for possible updates to the convention, including any necessary preparation for new technologies. “Given that this review has just started, we are carrying out a survey of our members so we can understand their priorities,” says Lloyd. “Early indications are that they want to maximise the learning impact while cadets are doing their at-sea training. We often hear that 12 months at sea is a bare minimum