Co-funded by the European Union


The Italian Shipping Academy was born in 2005 with the goal of delivering a higher education and training offer in the maritime field.

The Academy is an Istituto Tecnico Superiore (Superior Technical Institute), established by a public-private partnership participated by both business associations of the maritime sector and the local authorities of the city of Genoa, under the regulatory framework set by the Italian Ministry of Education.

Addressees of the proposed training courses are seamen on board and ashore, the operators at management and operational level within the maritime cluster. The Academy also plans to prior training, continuous training and adaptation to maritime disciplines of non-nautical qualifications.

The Ecole Nationale Superieure Maritime was created in 1571, with the main mission to “train merchant marine officers “and “ensure France its position as an international maritime actor”. It originally was a school of hydrography, and still is the oldest school in France after the college of France.

In 2010, after many evolutions through the centuries, ENSM was renewed, gathering four existing academies, as an institute of higher education.

ENSM provides courses in compliance with requirements for international certification (STCW) (Standards of Training, Certification and Watch keeping for Seafarers.) and its courses are compliant with the process of Bologna of European higher education.

ENSM develops applied research and is a involved in various projects, as partner with industries and/or other academies and engineering schools (projects on maritime autonomous vessels, future bridge…).

The development of international partnerships with maritime academies is among the main targets of the ENSM. ENSM has several branches, among which Marseille, identified as the branch responsible for development of Mediterranean partnerships.

The Institut Méditerranéen de Formation aux Métiers Maritimes-IMFMM (Mediterranean Institute of Training in Maritime Professions) is a professional training institute specialized in the domains of maritime transport, ports and logistics, responding to the demand of skills and competences of businesses, public authorities, administration partners and trainees both at national and regional level.

Its vocational training activities cover initial maritime education under STCW 78 and its amendments; other than the initial trainings mandated by regulatory requirements in the maritime sectors, complementary and continuous training in compliance with national and international standards are delivered.

The IMFMM is a Society with a public participation in the social capital, with legal personality and financial autonomy. The Institute aims at becoming a key player in training to Mediterranean merchant marines, ports, transport and logistics. To ensure the implementation of its missions, the IMFMM has been endowed with organization, human resources, premises, educational equipment.

The Project

The general Objective of Project CMES-WestMed is to establish a sustainable network of Maritime Education and Training Institutes, Public Authorities and Private actors of the maritime transport sector in the Western Mediterranean. The network will be based on the joint commitment to the adoption of a shared methodology for developing training courses based on common standards of qualifications in the Western Mediterranean through a stable networking among maritime education institute and public-private dialogue between maritime education institutes and actors of the maritime transport and logistics sector.

The network will develop the methodology in a cooperative way and test it through the implementation of 3 pilot training courses.

Mediterranean countries are currently experiencing a relevant mismatch between offer of skills and demand of the market for maritime transport professions. The maritime industry complaints that it is increasingly difficult to find people with the right practical skills to work in maritime transport, especially as officers at the sea.

There are several reasons for this situation, among which:

– Maritime professions are not well promoted and young people lack awareness of the opportunities offered by maritime career.

– Despite the highly international nature of the maritime transport sector, maritime education and training is dominated by national specificities that hampers international mobility of professionaIs with regard to this particular aspect, education and training in maritime transport, is characterised by national differences and specificities, most notably in methods for the development of competences and delivery of certificates which are often recognised only at national level.

– While the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) sets standards of certifications for certain aspects of work in maritime transport, it does not encompasses many qualifications that companies require. For example, despite the importance of electronics on modern vessels, the STCW does not envisage any certificate on electronics and despite the importance of using correct language and terminology, there is no common standard on teaching of maritime English.

Furthermore, whilst higher education degrees are standardised and recognised through the Bologna process within the EU, this is not true for education and training in non- EU countries and for vocational education and training and practical training in seagoing crews which represents the most important component of maritime professionals’ training.

The CMES-WestMed Project will address the current mismatch of skill demand and offer through:

– the definition and adoption of a methodology for the development of training courses for seafarers on the basis of common standards of qualifications;

– the testing of the methodology through the joint development of pilot training courses in selected subjects;

– the establishment of a sustainable network of Maritime Training and Education institutes based on the common commitment to the above- mentioned methodology and the sharing and pooling of resources;

– the joint implementation of an awareness and career guidance programme aimed at promoting maritime careers in which there is a current shortage of personnel in the western Mediterranean sea basin.


The project consortium aims to produce, along the two years of duration of the project, a list of outcomes that will be put at the international community disposal as proof of the result of a shared methodology in building innovative maritime education and training courses. The outcomes will take the form of deliverables that will be publicily exposed in this website. As some of the planned project deliverables have an experimental nature, they will be shown in this website only once their testing and results will be fulfilled.

In particular it will be shared with the wide maritime community the methodology, programme and test results of the courses:

– on maritime cybersecurity through simulation (developed by FAIMM – Italy)

– on new training techniques at navigation simulator (developed by ENSM – France)

– on new training in port and logistic subject (developed by IMFMM – Tunisia)

The publication was planned Autumn 2020, but due to Covid-19 pandemia, the term could be postponed.


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