Initiative 7.1: Port Operations Observatory in the Mediterranean
- Pilot action proposed:
Creation of an observatory for port operations in the Mediterranean Sea
- Stakeholders involved:
National Technical University of Athens
Data collection and inputs from all partners and participating Port Authorities
- Subject matter: What?
The action is aimed at developing an observatory of port operations in the Mediterranean region. The web-based observatory is an all-inclusive information centre and knowledge base on port administrative requirements, logistics procedures, port operations and customs formalities.
It is an advanced web-based platform for Port Authorities and stakeholders to record and disseminate ad-hoc knowledge and best practices, to facilitate exchange of views, and to record port-related activities and procedures. The observatory also allows for the understanding of the technical parameters related to performance of port operations, through the use of a specialized database, while highlighting at the same time strengths and weaknesses of port operations.
Moreover, it provides a communication platform at European, national and regional levels, based on a theme-classified discussion group.
- Purpose: Why?
The basic principle for the development of an observatory of port operations is to provide port authorities and stakeholders with a contemporary solution to circulate knowledge, views and best practices, and to record port operations, activities and procedures, allowing for short-term and long-term planning and management of the port system.
This is an effort to monitor the regional port system and to regularly update pre-defined performance indicators by collecting and analyzing network data. The presentation and dissemination of the outputs, along with the re-evaluation of the indicators enable the relevant decision makers and port actors to continually monitor their operations, as well as the entire intermodal logistics chain.
- Location: Where?
Premises of National Technical University of Athens, Greece.
- Sequence: When?
- People: Who?
National Technical University of Athens with the involvement of all partners of the project
- Method: How?
The primary phases of the development process include surveys of ports through questionnaires and interviews. These create a comprehensive picture of existing port and customs procedures, any bottlenecks in performance of port operations and hinterland connections, as well as any obstacles or best practices and chances to simplify and standardize processes.
The preliminary steps towards implementing the observatory also include the identification and organization of user and data requirements, as well as the outline of the IT system configuration (database software and hardware, security/access rules, etc.) and of the functional web interface design. These can be combined with the development of a rigorous business plan on commercialization opportunities within the observatory context, along with a recognition program for ports willing to offer data (e.g. rewards for contributing ports or incentives to continue annual reporting).
The basic structural elements, upon which the observatory is developed, are:
- Database, associated to port operations, volumes, services etc.;
- Reference Library/Knowledge Centre, including legislation, guidelines, projects/studies related to port operations, custom procedures, port formalities, safety/security issues, recommendations and best practices, statistical & forecasting tools);
- Reporting and Monitoring Tool based on the performance indicators for each port;
- Communication Platform, creating new interactions and cooperation among port authorities, stakeholders and interested parties, links and synergies with other observatories, and organized according to thematic clusters.
- Cost: How much?
National Technical University of Athens
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