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HANSA 08-2017

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Schifffahrt | Shipping »The industry needs to be more engaged« The post-graduate World Maritime University is going to celebrate its 25th anniversary next year. President Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry talks to HANSA about a new fund, the role of the industry and the share of women and students from developing countries How would you describe the role of WMU? Doumbia-Henry: It is an extremely important, if not an indispensable field. The maritime industry is highly technical and specialised, very complex both at sea and on shore. Specialised education is critical for an industry which is also subject to significant technological change and development. Are there any »gaps« in education? Doumbia-Henry: Maritime education needs to evolve to deal with technical aspects like the increasing automation. We have a lot of new issues in terms of ship effciency and energy effciency and the moving to low-carbon emissions to meet climate change goals of the Paris Agreement. We have an important role to play in facilitating the harmonization and the uniform interpretation and the effective implementation of international conventions and instruments. We are focussing a lot on the impact of technology and automation on ships and safety. It is going to have a significant impact. How many of your graduates work at IMO? Doumbia-Henry: About 40% of governments representatives at IMO are WMU graduates, including the Secretary General and a lot of IMO staff. The industry is being more and more professionalized through our education and training and we are spreading that professionalization through the outcomes of our academic programme to the developing countries. And that is where the capacity has been the weakest in the past. And that is where the university has had its greatest impact in building capacities in developing countries to have the expertise, that will enable them to play their part, for example in the IMO. Are there any special financial instruments for students from developing countries? Doumbia-Henry: One of the concerns at the time when WMU was created was the significance and the importance of supporting developing countries to gain expertise, experience and capacity to engage in the maritime industry. The good news is that certainly more than 90% of our graduates return back to their home country. We were able to bring in donors who could help fund and provide scholarships for students from developing countries. Probably about 80% of the people that we have trained are coming from developing countries. The need for capacity building is growing, particularly today with such rapid changes in technology and the complexity of international regulations. Is there any ambition to change the share of male/female students or the share of students from developing/developed countries? Doumbia-Henry: I am the first female president of WMU WMU President Cleopatra Doumbia-Henry Photos: WMU 40 HANSA International Maritime Journal – 154. Jahrgang – 2017 – Nr. 8

Schifffahrt | Shipping The WMU is based in Malmö, Sweden WMU saw 4,359 graduates since its start in 1983 The students come from 166 countries and I come from a developing country (Dominica). This is already a historic move made by the IMO and the board of WMU. It also sends a very important signal. For the impact of women in the industry it needs a lot more work to be done. Since I arrived here two years ago, I put a lot of emphasis to increase the number of women studying at WMU. Last year, we saw the highest number of female students with 37% of the intake of 2016/2017 to our student body. That has been a dramatic increase, an important achievement. The number of students from developed countries grew as well. This is important. The WMU is not an academic institution for the developing world. The importance of having students both from the developing and the developed world and the lessons learnt that can be shared by them is invaluable. So we try to attract more students from the developed world. The sharing of experiences is invaluable, also in terms of culture, expertise in maritime affairs. Is there any plan to offer regular studies, not only post-graduate studies? Doumbia-Henry: For the time being, it is not on our agenda. Our job is to train the teachers. Their training has to meet international requirements for certification etc. I think this is the right way. It is not for us to compete with national institutions, it is for us to capacitate them to ensure that we teach them in terms of ensuring that they are able to deliver on the IMO minimum requirements of STCW. In your last strategic plan, the WMU said that »financial sustainability remains a challenge« and that the WMU is looking for »diversification of generation of revenues«. What is the state of affairs in this respect? Is the existence of WMU in question? Doumbia-Henry: When the IMO created WMU, the system of national governments contribution to the IMO was not extended to the WMU. The university therefore needs to be funded by voluntary contributions by governments and the industry. That has worked very well so far and we can manage our daily operations. But looking into the future, there was a feeling that we needed to find a modality for a more long-term sustainable funding. It is for that reason that the board decided to establish an endowment fund like the American-type model. We do now have that modality and we are in the process of promoting the fund. We do have a contribution from the German government of 1 mill. €. The WMU is well established today and well recognized, but it is very important that its future in the long-term is more secure. Apart from the German contribution, did you get more positive reaction? Doumbia-Henry: From an industry player of the Philippines, there is a contribution, yes. The fund is still a new mechanism. We have established governance structures with committees that are operational right now. Now we are preparing a major launch of the endowment fund and a massive campaign. WMU facts 4,359 graduates from 166 countries 2016: first student intake to the new specializations of Maritime Energy Management and Ocean Sustainability Governance & Management Number of graduates increased steadily from 70 in 1985 to over 240 in 2016 The Malmö MSc programme saw 136 students this year which is the largest class on record. About 25 PhD and 170 students in distance learning programmes WMU staff: 75 Is there a specific goal for the fund? Doumbia-Henry: We are on track. We have a target of 30 mill. € that we wish to raise. The WMU is well established. But what is important is that it is able to adjust and to adapt and be the most appropriate and effective educational and research capacity building and developmental academic institutions that the maritime industry needs. It is there, but it has to be appropriated by the industry not only in words but in deeds. Until when would you like to raise the 30 mill. €? Doumbia-Henry: We have a target of 100 mill. €, but for the next five years it is 30 mill. €. In the WMU’s last »strategic plan« a focus was being put on »new ways of further collaboration«. What might be the focus of your next »strategic plan«? Doumbia-Henry: The plan is for four years from 2016 to 2019. For the next two years to come, one of our priority focuses is to strengthen maritime research and create synergies out of that strengthens. Of course, the endowment fund is a key priority as well, to take it to another level with significant growth. Another very important area is to strengthen our industry engagement. What is the background of that focus? Doumbia-Henry: It means engaging more the industry as a maritime industry. There is a very good engagement of governments in terms of funding and investing and sending people. Even the smaller and developing countries are doing that. What I really want is that the maritime industry engages more. I want them to recognize the significance this university has for them. And of course, at a time when environmental issues are very high on the agenda, we will be also active to deliver training and capacity building to national administrations to help them implement these various commitments. Interview: Michael Meyer HANSA International Maritime Journal – 154. Jahrgang – 2017 – Nr. 8 41

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