Smartest, Greenest, Safest

Waterborne Vision 2030 & Innovation Opportunities

Smart ships, smart ports and smart infrastructure will be facilitated by the growing EU maritime data highway which will provide high capacity, low cost and secure data communications around our coasts. Close to zero environmental impact will be achieved by clean engines and clean fuels, low resistance hulls and rigorous management of all emissions. Adoption of green technologies on the operating fleet will be facilitated by plug-in refitting solutions.

Electric vessels in and around our maritime cities will be the norm. Port facilities will include clean, shore based power for larger vessels, and smaller vessels will routinely enter and leave ports and harbours under electric propulsion.

New sensors, data management and communications technologies will not only pave the way towards reduced manning and vessel autonomy but will also allow for smarter, cleaner and safer vessels. Fully integrated transport logistics will ensure the seamless transfer of materials and goods from source to final destination.

Safety and security of our shipping will be enhanced further by the development of improved materials for impact and fire resistance, by a better understanding of ship behaviour in abnormal conditions and by improved emergency planning and execution.

The EU will continue to lead the way with the design, build and operation of innovative, flexible, modular, and highly efficient working boats. With the inexorable increase in shipping and offshore activity, these vessels will take on an even more important role in the provision of the day to day services that keep our maritime industry on the move. The new challenges of Blue Growth will be met with specialised vessels, that are modular and reconfigurable throughout their entire operational life.

Increasing wealth around the world will lead to a growing middle class, with more disposable income to spend on goods, services and leisure. The EU will retain its lead in the design, build and operation of cruise vessels to satisfy this market and the recreational marine sector will lead the world with innovative craft responding to ever increasing customer expectations.

Advanced production technologies will underpin the high value products being built, using advanced modelling techniques, joining technologies and new materials to deliver flexible and cost effective solutions.


  • To align EU maritime research with the best future strategic and commercial opportunities
  • To identify the supporting innovation and technology
  • To provide the best possible return on research investment in terms of jobs, wealth creation and regulatory compliance
  • To support the creation of the World’s Smartest, Greenest and Safest and most successful maritime industry

The Vision has been developed to address maritime needs and challenges arising from the predicted Global Trends and Drivers.