Global Maritime Professional Book of Knowledge (GMP-BoK)

Michael Manuel,, Gamal Ghalwash, Mahmoud Elsayed Elbawab, Sauli Ahvenjarvi, Takeshi Nakazawa, Yasser B. A. Farag, Amr Mohamed Moneer Ibrahim, Mohamed Rowihil

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report


The global community is changing, and while such change has always happened, its pace in the 21st century is unprecedented. Markets are changing, products are changing, social norms and preferences are changing and industry is changing. Education is responding to such changes and even driving them in some contexts. This change, however, has not been as significant in the maritime industry as it has been in others. The conservative nature of the industry as a whole is reflected in its relatively slow response to change; a tendency just as prevalent in maritime higher educational institutions.
While the traditional approaches to maritime education and training – in particular, seafarer education and training – have served the industry well and continue to do so, a recognition of the rapid changes in a number of industry-influencing factors makes it imperative that maritime higher education institutions interrogate the effects of such changes, as well as their own contributions and optimum response to them.
The International Association of Maritime Universities is currently the best global representation of higher education in the maritime context. It comprises, as at December 2018, sixty-seven (67) members from thirty-five (35) countries. The membership is made up of high-level Universities from all parts of the globe (Africa, Asia (Pacific and Oceania), the Americas (North and South), and Europe together with two special members (the World Maritime University and the Nippon Foundation). It has, since its inception in 1999, with the significant support of the Nippon Foundation, offered a forum where the world’s best maritime universities can engage in academic discourse, research and community development. In light of the Association’s fundamental goals as articulated in its basic agreement and in subsequent statements (Tasmanian Statement of 2014 and Haiphong Statement of 2016), as well as in recognition of current global trends, the membership of IAMU through its International Executive Board (IEB) and with the support of the Nippon Foundation, has sought to formulate a vision for a Global Maritime Professional (GMP). This initiative is intended to meet the envisaged needs of industry and a rapidly evolving educational and career context while catering for the professional development aspirations of individual seafarers. The new concept of a Global Maritime Professional has been described as: An individual who is a professional in the maritime industry and who is equipped with all the relevant technical competencies relevant to their specific operational role in the industry and as required by international requirements, with high level academic skills including logical and critical thinking and who – in addition to their technical competency – exhibits a high level of professionalism and ethical behaviour, human relations skills, emotional intelligence and multicultural/diversity awareness and sensitivity. Such an individual exhibits significant leadership skill and is able to optimally work with teams and also take personal initiative. They additionally exhibit a high sense of environmental consciousness and the need for sustainable practices and have an excellent grasp of contemporary issues affecting the maritime industry.
To address the educational needs of such GMPs, the IAMU through a task force and subsequently a committee, analysed the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed by such GMPs and set out a number of related Intended Learning Outcomes. This Body of Knowledge (BoK), sets out that process and the detailed learning outcomes that have resulted from the work of the committee. It is the aim of the IAMU that, through the BoK, students graduating from across the membership of the Association, will exhibit the learning outcomes for the GMP as defined in the text. The primary users of the BoK, the member Universities, are therefore encouraged to examine the learning outcomes agreed in the BoK and thereafter within the academic freedoms and requirements of their own jurisdictions, develop curriculum (syllabi, learning activities, assessment methods etc.) that will aim at the achievement of these learning outcomes in a consistent manner.
The specified learning outcomes in the BoK are associated with learning outcome taxonomies in three educational domains: cognitive, affective and psychomotor. They are related to different GMP tiers covering various levels of certificates of competency and academic degrees. All of these are presented in a series of tables and guidelines on how the IAMU member universities may use the tables.
To conclude the BoK, a discussion of the future and IAMU’s engagement with it is presented. It is argued that significant change is underway and that IAMU should strategically position itself to seize the opportunities these changes present and to mitigate their negative effects. It is suggested that traditional maritime universities should look beyond their traditional collaborations and form new partnerships with other industries as well as with governments in a continuous triple-helix approach. Finally, the BoK recommends linkages with ongoing work of the IAMU and mechanisms to encourage achievement of the learning outcomes agreed in the BoK.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationTokyo, Japan
Number of pages160
ISBN (Electronic)978-4-907408-26-8
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2019


  • maritime education and training
  • Bloom's taxonomy


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