SAFETY4SEA:  Your organization has been shortlisted for the 2018 SMART4SEA Awards in the ‘e-Navigation’ category alongside a number of other distinguished nominees. What would you like to share with industry’s stakeholders with respect to this development?  

Capt. David Patraiko: The Nautical Institute is honored to be nominated for this award. As an international professional body it is our mission to ‘support those in control of sea-going craft’ and this has never before been more important than in the age of e- navigation and ship operations with increased use of technologies.


S4S: When it comes to tackling the smart challenges around the shipping sector, what are the core priorities on your agenda?

Capt.D.P.: It is easy to refer to technology as being ‘Smart’ however is it really? The Nautical Institute focuses on solutions that are ‘fit for purpose’ and takes the user and the human element into consideration. This is why the NI has been participating in eNavigation debates at the IMO and around the world to ensure that mariners are represented at the design stage.


S4S: What are the key things to have in mind when providing e-navigation solutions for vessels?

Capt.D.P.: The NI have championed a number of eNavigation solutions, however one of our prime solutions has been for the greater use of standardization for navigation interfaces (referred to as S-Mode at the IMO). First proposed by the NI in 2008, S-Mode based on user needs for standardization, looks set to be agreed at the IMO next year. For many years mariners have been challenged to work across a wide range of manufacturer’s equipment many having different interfaces for common functions making familiarization difficult. S-Mode should improve this situation for mariners.


S4S: Do you have any new projects on the pipeline and/or plans that you would like to share with the rest of the industry?

Capt.D.P.: The Nautical Institute recognizes that as technology develops, available data increases and onboard systems become more complex the task of Navigation is changing. The NI is now focused on identifying the best of these new technologies and how they complement the best of traditional skills to bring about the best navigational procedures. In a recent edition of our award winning magazine The Navigator (freely available at we highlighted the need for good lookouts and how technology and the human eye can best work together.


S4S: What is your key message to the industry for enhancing the safety of navigation in the smart era?

Capt.D.P.: We are in an unprecedented time of change with new regulations, technology and training capability, however the voice of the mariner needs to be taken into account at all stages of change and development. The role of navigation in the future will undoubtedly change but the need for professionals will always remain. The NI is committed to its role of supporting those in control of seagoing craft now and into the future by bringing together the best of the new and traditional methods with professional development.


You may cast your vote for The Nautical Institute at 2019 SMART4SEA Awards dedicated webpage till 21st of December 2018!



The views presented hereabove are only those of the author and not necessarily those of  SAFETY4SEA and are for information sharing and discussion  purposes only.