Waterway innovation sharing made easy

In the current economic climate, businesses face change and challenges on a daily basis. Dealing with a rapidly expanding marketplace (globalization), and increasing competition, diversity among consumers, and availability to new forms of technology requires creativity and innovation. But, when strategizing during strategic planning, and when designing new products and services, how can one know what innovations are already there? The answer has been provided for inland waterways through an innovative solution – a digital information source called, imaginatively, the Innovation Database – www.naiades.info/innovations


Financed by the European Commission and implemented within the framework of the PLATINA project, the Innovation Database for Inland Waterway Transport aims to encourage sharing of innovation throughout Europe. Information on innovative projects is easily accessible with just a few mouse clicks. The database will bring innovation owners and innovation users closer together and consequently speed up developments in the IWT-sector.


Inland Waterway Transport (IWT) is well known as an efficient and reliable transport mode. Innovations help to continuously develop its technical and economic performance as well as its environmental and safety standards. Through an ongoing process of innovations implementation the sector can keep on improving its usability and customer satisfaction focus, making sure it is seen as a preferred partner in intermodal transport. However, in order to continue this strategy, an optimal transfer of know how into practice is required. This is why the Innovation Database is created.


The online database is based on a Wiki-approach and enables users to easily look for existing innovations and to insert own entries with minimal effort. Currently the database is already populated with some selected innovations and it will be enlarged gradually in the course of time. All entries follow the same structure and are arranged according to functional groups. They comprise both research projects and practical examples from industry. Presently there are innovations for, amongst others, ship design in general, hull structure, equipment for cargo and crew, machinery and ship systems and on improvements in economic, environmental and logistics performances, respectively. Comments and contributions are welcome and can be entered online or over the contacts below.



The European project PLATINA (PLATform for the Implementation of NAIADES) aims to promote and strengthen European IWT. Within this project 22 partners from nine countries pursue this goal dealing with the five work packages markets, fleets, jobs & skills, image and infrastructure.


The following partners are involved in the creation of the database: Entwicklungszentrum für Schiffstechnik und Transportsysteme e.V. (DST, coordination), Bureau Voorlichting Binnenvaart (BVB), Centar za razvoj unutarnje plovidbe d.o.o. (CRUP), Centre d’Etudes Techniques Maritimes et Fluviales (CETMEF), Finnish Waterways Association (FWA), via donau – Österreichische Wasserstraßen-Gesellschaft mbH and Voies Navigables de France (VNF).

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