About us

The global body for maritime professionals.

Who are we?

The Nautical Institute is a non-governmental organisation (NGO) with consultative status at the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Our aim is to represent seafarers' and practical maritime professionals' views at the highest level.

As a representative body, the Institute fulfils its role in many different ways. Membership by proven qualifications and experience helps to set standards. The technical committees ensure that professional opinion and advice is fed back to the industry’s decision making bodies.

Publications written by practitioners for practitioners provide the best operational guidance available and the branches encourage professional development in local areas.


Our aims and objectives

- To provide the strongest possible professional focus, dedicated to improving standards of those involved in control of seagoing craft, while maintaining the Institute as an international centre of nautical excellence.

- To represent the professional views of the Institute's members to and within the international, national and local bodies considering the safety and efficiency of shipping operations.

- To promote and co-ordinate in the public interest the development of nautical studies in all the Institute's branches by :

  • Encouraging and promoting a high standard of qualification, competence and knowledge among those in control of seagoing craft including non-displacement craft.
  • Facilitating the exchange and publication of information and ideas on nautical science, encourage research and publish its results.
  • Establishing and maintaining appropriate educational and professional standards of membership.
  • Co-operating with Government Departments and other bodies concerned with statutory and other qualifications, and with universities and other educational institutes and authorities in the furtherance of education and training in nautical science and practice.
  • Encouraging the formation of branches and professional groups in different areas worldwide.
Our structure

Executive Board

Composed of 8 to 15 Trustees elected by Council, the Executive Board meets 3 or 4 times per year and is the ultimate decision making body for the Institute. It is tasked to develop and implement the Strategic Plan, manage the affairs of the Institute on behalf of the members, and appoint and oversee the performance of the Chief Executive.

It may delegate powers to committees but remains responsible for policy decisions, monitoring progress against plans, issuing an annual report and audited annual accounts. The Trustees must also discharge their statutory and legal responsibilities as Company Directors. Any submissions under the Institute’s Disciplinary Guidelines will be handled by the Board. A sub-committee of Trustees specialises in Financial and Audit matters. The Nautical Institute maintains standards through its committees which mostly report to the Executive Board.


The principal responsibility of Council is to elect the Trustees and ensure delivery of the Constitutional objectives of The Nautical Institute, assurance of performance and assessment of risk. Council also acts as an advisory body to the Executive Board and the specialist committees due to its larger, international composition (35 to 56 members) drawn from many sectors of the maritime industry.

At least half the members of Council must be actively employed in a sea-going capacity. Important functions are strategic oversight and input to the management process and to consider/approve Strategic Plans prepared for the Executive Board by its committees. In so doing it will ensure exploitation of the full range of expert advice available in the international members. The Assurance and Nominations committees report to Council.

Younger Members' Council

The Younger Members' Council is a new addition to our structure, and will come into full operation at the end of 2019. The Younger Members' Council will be made up of members aged 18-35, who are keen to help The Nautical Institute better support our younger members and ensure their views are fully represented. We have selected the following members for this opportunity:


Habib Ibrahim
Rotondwa Tshabuse


Anna Ruszczynska
John Kizhakethil John


Wouter van der Wal
Chris Chafer

Latin America

Rodrigo Fabireza dos Santos Melo
Nitzeira Watson

Middle East

Hamid Rehman

North America

Alexandra Hagerty
Sean Poole


Benjamin Weedon
Alroy DCosta

East Programme Secretary

Sajith Babu

West Programme Secretary

Graham Fisher

Assurance Committee

A sub-committee of Council members to assess the performance of the Executive Board and committees against agreed Key Performance Indicators and make remedial recommendations to Council where necessary. To assess risk within the governance structure and provide consequent advice to the Executive Board.

Nominations Committee

Composed of 12 members and reporting to Council, it is tasked to assess candidates for nomination as prospective members: of the Council and its committees; of the Executive Board; and as Chairmen, and where appropriate Vice-Chairmen, of the committees.

This will entail effective succession planning and recommendations to Council. Standards and candidates for Fellowship and Honorary Fellowship are also assessed by this committee so as to make recommendations to Council and the Executive Board. It is also responsible for developing further criteria and procedures, if necessary, for election to and dismissal from the Executive Board.

Technical Committee

To consider and make recommendations to the Executive Board concerning all matters of a technical professional nature and their training requirements (correlated with the Professional Development Committee); to oversee, through a Publishing Advisory Group, the publishing activities of the Institute, ensuring that appropriate media are used and standards are maintained. The committee will normally meet twice per year.

Professional Development Committee

To keep under review and advise the Executive Board on proposals and topics related to education, qualifications and professional development for the maritime profession, including accreditation standards. The Committee will particularly ensure recommendations are correlated with seagoing requirements and experience, and that effective professional techniques are proposed to meet new developments internationally. The committee will normally meet twice per year.

IMO Committee

This committee will normally meet once per year to formulate, on behalf of the Executive Board, the policy of the Institute on matters to be debated and worked on at the IMO. The committee also oversees the work of the Institute delegation to the IMO and liaises closely with the Chief Executive and Head of Delegation to ensure the Institute makes an effective contribution to the work of the IMO on the basis of evidence gathering from the membership.

A key responsibility of the committee is to select the subject matter that is most important for the Institute to contribute to the IMO. The committee provides a summary report of the Institute’s activities at the IMO to Council and the Executive Board on an annual basis, and it is considered that substantial electronic communication between the members of the committee is necessary throughout the year. Members of this committee are directly elected by Council for 3 years and may be re-elected for further 3 year periods.


The Institute employs a fairly small permanent staff on a full time or part time basis. At least one third are professional mariners who have held senior positions at sea and / or within the maritime industry previously and they are encouraged to maintain current knowledge through coastal voyages annually. Performance standards for staff are laid down in the Institute Staff Handbook. The Institute runs an appraisal scheme related to tasks and performance reviews which in turn are linked to the provisions of the five year Strategic Plan.
Our branches

Nautical Institute Branches are grouped into world zones.

The principal aim of the Branches is to promote the activities and increase the membership of The Nautical Institute in their area.

The Branches are vibrant, pro-active organisations of current professionals, and provide:

  • A local professional focus
  • Communication and fellowship with other nautical professionals (networking)
  • Solving professional problems through seminars and workshops
  • A programme of technical and social meetings
  • Local and, in some cases, national representation on regulatory bodies or user groups
  • Assistance with updating and professional development
  • Involvement with projects locally and internationally
  • Development of management and organisational skills
Our people
Captain Nick Nash FNI
Captain Nick Nash FNI


Captain Nash is Senior Master for Carnival Corporation’s 144,000 GT, 3,650 passenger vessel the Royal Princess. He also teaches at the group’s simulator training facility in Amsterdam, where he is a part-time lecturer on BRM and Shiphandling.

Captain Nash also served as Vice-President and Senior Vice-President for The Nautical Institute and is an active and enthusiastic member of Council.

Jillian Carson-Jackson FNI
Jillian Carson-Jackson FNI

Senior Vice-President

Jillian has over three decades of experience in the maritime environment, both afloat and ashore. This encompasses management experience in aids to navigation, vessel traffic services (VTS), vessel tracking and maritime technology related fields. She also has experience at senior management level in decision-making, policy development, strategic business planning, consensus building and research and development. Her experience spans three continents, with a global reach throughout the international maritime environment. 

As an active member of the IALA VTS and ENAV Committees, and as chair of the communications working group of the IALA ENAV Committee, she promotes the effective use of technology to support safe, efficient and pollution free transits. Jillian’s expertise in navigation, education and maritime radio communication technology has been recognised by the award of Fellowships from both the Royal Institute of Navigation and The Nautical Institute. In addition to her active role in the NI, Jillian is both an assistant editor and a peer reviewer of professional papers for the Journal of Navigation (Cambridge University Press).

Captain Duncan A P McKelvie FNI
Captain Duncan A P McKelvie FNI


Duncan is semi-retired and UK based. He oversees the activities of his own company offices in Poland and Dubai supplying general marine and quality documentation, surveys and audits. He also sources skilled shipyard labour for shipyards in Northern Europe, Baltic and Scandinavia and riding squads and superintendents for long and short term contracts.

Mr Walter Vervloesem FNI
Mr Walter Vervloesem FNI


Walter founded the IMCS Training Academy in 2014, having been involved in the expansion of the IMCS Group to 19 branch offices worldwide and becoming its Chairman in 2000. He became a marine surveyor on leaving the sea in 1988 with the rank of chief officer on short-sea trade vessels. He pioneered the use of ultrasound for testing the weathertight intergrity of hatch covers and trains people in its use.
Captain André Le Goubin FNI
Captain André Le Goubin FNI


André is currently employed as a Mooring Master in the lightering trade, undertaking ship-to-ship transfers in the Gulf of Mexico. He has recently started his own company, DNA Marine, where he specialises in providing expert witness services. His experience includes command of high-speed ferries (hydrofoils, mono- and multi-hull ro-ro passenger vessels), working as a pilot for the London Pilotage Service and acting as a marine consultant.

André is also the author of 'Mentoring at Sea - The 10 minute challenge'.

Captain Trevor Bailey FNI
Captain Trevor Bailey FNI


Trevor is a highly-respected Master Mariner with over 45 years’ sea-going and maritime industry experience, starting with BP Tanker Co. Ltd. His experience includes over 15 years in command of cruise ships and ro-ro passenger ferries and extensive experience in marine consultancy.

Trevor is Chairman of the Institute’s Technical Committee and was the Technical Editor for the third edition of the NI’s publication The Nautical Institute on Command.

On Trafalgar Day 2015, Trevor was awarded the UK Merchant Navy Medal for services to safety on high-speed catamaran ferries and to The Nautical Institute.

Mr Peter Hinchliffe FNI
Mr Peter Hinchliffe FNI

Chairman of the Executive Board

Captain Duncan Telfer FNI
Captain Duncan Telfer FNI

Honorary Treasurer, Executive Board

Captain John Lloyd RD MBA FNI
Captain John Lloyd RD MBA FNI


John joined The Nautical Institute from the Australian Maritime College (AMC) in Tasmania where he was a Professor in the National Centre for Ports and Shipping. During his seven years at AMC he had a two years leave of absence to set up the Angolan Maritime Training Centre. Before joining AMC he spent two years working in the Vanuatu Maritime College.

John’s varied career prior to these appointments included four years in senior positions with Flagship Training in the UK, 10 years with Warsash Maritime Centre as a senior and principal lecturer in simulation and operations, and two years as a marine pilot in Walvis Bay. He served at sea from 1975 for 16 years, gaining command in 1987.

Mr Waheed Din
Mr Waheed Din

Director of Finance

Ms Bridget Hogan
Ms Bridget Hogan

Director of Publications and Membership

Bridget Hogan is Director of Publishing & Marketing of The Nautical Institute, where she is responsible for the Institute’s 100 plus book titles, its magazine production and its marketing and communications. She has been involved with the publishing industry for more than 40 years and has worked in the maritime industry in various roles for over 35 years.

After starting in newspapers, Bridget moved to industrial reporting, first in the motor industry, then ports and finally shipping. She was appointed a News Editor at 21 and then moved to Lloyd’s List as its senior shipping writer. From there she moved to the shipping industry.

After working for a shipowner, developing the group’s newbuild and offshore programmes, she set up her own consultancy. During that time, she worked in projects, marketing and communications for, among others, shipowners, ship managers, a flag state, ports, the Baltic Exchange, Lloyd’s Register of Shipping, the Oslo Stock Exchange, and the Renault Group. 

Bridget has also edited Marine Money and a local newspaper, contributed to a number of international maritime and related journals around the world and has trained and mentored many over her career. After moving to LR Fairplay to manage third party publications, she joined the The Nautical Institute in 2008.

Mr David J Patraiko FNI
Mr David J Patraiko FNI

Director of Projects

David Patraiko is the Director of Projects for The Nautical Institute, and coordinates its Technical and Professional Development Committees. He is responsible for developing and managing major Institute projects and he represents the professional interests of members in general shipping, training and technical forums.

Much of this work is aimed at assisting members of the Institute with continuous professional development. He has led research and produced many papers and articles on training, electronic navigation, the associated ‘Human Element’ effects created by technology, and Marine Spatial Planning. He is currently involved with the international debate on e-Navigation and is Chairman of the IALA e-navigation working group for Strategy and Operations, Chaired the Industry ECDIS Training Group, and is Chairman of the Green Awards Board of Experts.

After a brief period as an independent consultant and surveyor, in 1997 he accepted the position of Project Manager for The Nautical Institute, and became Director of Projects in 2003. A graduate of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy (US), he sailed on a variety of international vessels in his twelve years in the Merchant Navy (1985 – 1997). He holds an Unlimited Master Mariners licence, and was awarded an MBA degree from Henley Management College (UK).