Progress and summary of activities first half-year 2018
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The Centre can report a good progression of activities planned in 2018, high activity tempo, good dialog in the management team and across the research teams. One challenge remains to achieve even higher synergy among the research areas. Detailed progress per WP is given in the report attahced below, including research task and deliverables (models development and verification, research studies, and publications), PhD/Postdoc/MSc project progress. Currently 5 PhDs and 1 Postdoc are financed by the SFI, and one PhD is under recruitment.
The management team meets every 2-3 weeks to jointly plan next milestones and orientate each other about own progress and challenges.
The cooperation and dialog with industry partners has a high priority. Efforts are put on keeping all partners involved. The feedback and expectations from each industry partner presented at the Network meeting in Bergen in April confirmed the active participation from industry and enable each partner to get a general overview of which partner is involved in which activity. The biggest challenge is to achieve balance between research resources available and industry partners expectations in terms of activities and deliverables.
Scientific progress includes an increasing number of scientific publications, especially from the PhD students in 2018. In addition, to respond to industry partners request, more effort will be put on technology watch and state-of-the-art reviews of central technologies and measures for energy efficiency and emissions reductions. This will be enable interesting webinars in the Fall 2018. Dissemination of results through the website is still subject to improvement. This includes both easy access to documentation, but also broader scope of information and knowledge (covering topics of interests not necessarily covered by the SFI).
External communication and presence in media is still receiving relatively less priority, thus a weak point in the SFI. Additional resources are under consideration. A clear communication strategy and positioning in political debate has not been established yet. So far in 2018, focus has been put on cooperation with the Norwegian Shipowner Association, to benefit from their notoriety in the media and among international stakeholders, while contributing with research and fact-based input to the ongoing political debate on shipping impact to climate.
Innovation: the Centre has launched the discussion for identifying and documenting innovation and value creation for Norwegian maritime industry. For the moment mapping of innovations consists o individual success stories from partners. Some work remains for systematically describing what kinds of innovation the SFI contributes to and in which way. Such clarification could facilitate further identification, development and adoption of novel solutions by industrial partners.
Internationalisation is one of the evaluation criteria of the Centre, and identified as a common challenging point of the SFI scheme. Smart Maritime has still to define a clear strategy for internationalisation.