Enhancing the skills and expertise needed to develop maritime robotics applications in the blue economy is the goal of the Maritime Robotics in Blue Economy (MARBLE) initiative. Funded under the European transnational cooperation programme ADRION, the project – coordinated by the University of Zagreb – brings together universities, research institutions, business clusters and digital innovation hubs.
The project partnership includes Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Greece, Montenegro and Italy, which is involved through the National Institute of Oceanography and Applied Geophysics (OGS), the University of Trieste and the Maritime Technology Cluster FVG, a reference point for maritime technologies in Friuli Venezia Giulia.
Specifically, MARBLE aims to establish a network of academic and business partners working together on blue economy capacity building by organizing networking events and study visits to partner sites and companies, including educational methodology seminars and best practice knowledge transfer. This first action will lay the foundations for the organization of an innovative course of study providing both theoretical and practical knowledge, as well as a hackathon focused on problem-solving in the blue economy sector.
The main challenge tackled in the project is the current lack of courses aimed at developing the intersectoral and technological skills required in maritime robotics. To fill this gap, the project partners will create a joint, international, interdisciplinary and sustainability-oriented master’s programme. The consortium will adopt a strategy and action plan defining long-term and short-term goals, as well as actions and resources for the implementation of the programme.