Maritime Blockchain Labs Forms New Consortium To Build Blockchain Seafarer Certification System

Blockchain, Innovation | December 13, 2018 By:

Maritime Blockchain Labs (MBL) has formed a new consortium to develop a seafarer certification system using blockchain technology.

MBL was founded by blockchain technology and governance experts BLOC and the Lloyd’s Register Foundation to create broad collaboration on blockchain pilot projects with industry actors. MBL aims to drive intelligent, informed blockchain adoption in maritime sector through demonstrator projects that will deliver first-hand, real-world insight of how these technologies can be applied, and how the industry can realize maximum benefit from their capabilities.

MBL’s new demonstrator project will look to refine and advance processes that can be marred by a lack of verification for safety documentation, paper-based certificate management and a lack of access to validated safety and training certifications of seafarers. Participating firms include MMBL, Maersk, Heidmar, PTC Holdings Corp., Mission to Seafarers, C-LOG, Navozyme, Hanseaticsoft and others.

““Blockchain is essentially a collaborative technology, and so we need to build with industry rather than adopting a top-down approach, and therefore an essential ingredient to this project is to start by building a consortium that represents everyone in the value chain, from vessel owners to the seafarers themselves,” said Deanna MacDonald, CEO of BLOC.

Project participants will work together to develop a solution that would enable individual seafarers to manage their certificate repository from original issuance, maritime administrations to manage the renewal and endorsement across jurisdictions, crew management organizations to manage seafarers for crewing of vessels, and vessel owners to receive an overview of their crew, certificates and endorsements.

“In such an international and distributed industry, it can be challenging to achieve robust mechanisms for providing a single, accurate record of crew education, training and experience and this has the potential to impact on safety,” said Gary Pogson from Lloyd’s Register Foundation. “A way to address this is to bring together the multiple parties involved in the processes and build a system that works for them, establishing trust throughout the network.”

Graeme Thomson, Head of Northern Europe Manning Office of Maersk, said that building and maintaining an intuitive and user-friendly platform for the management of crew certification will bring hugely significant benefits to all stakeholders.

“Blockchain has the potential to significantly improve the transparency, authenticity and ease of working with crew certification; both for the ship owner/operator and most importantly for the crew themselves,” Thomson said.