Human-centred design (HCD) is already a concern, particularly in some research and development fields of the maritime industry, e.g. with respect to human machine interaction. In order to utilise this knowledge and make HCD more accessible to designers, operators and authorities, this task aims to identify those best practices used across the marine design and operational life cycle to support the development and the application of the Human-centred framework being conducted in Workpackages 2 and 3 of the Cyclades project.

In the first part, regulatory material (i.e. from international organisations, national administrations and classification societies) was identified and described. Some mandatory requirements were found but these are very unspecific, making them very difficult to apply and to verify compliance with. Although many additional advisories, recommendations or guidelines have been found, these are not mandatory and compliance is only on a voluntary basis. Challenges for the regulators to develop more specific HCD-related rules and regulations were also discussed. Two alternative approaches could be followed: requirements for the product (i.e. the result of the design process) or requirements on the design method itself. The technical pros and cons of both approaches were discussed but the main challenge appears to be the need for a driver for developing such new rules and regulations and compelling compliance.

The second part highlighted the very limited attention paid today to the end-users needs and work, apart from what is directly required by rules and regulations, by people designing, building, manufacturing and selling maritime human-computer systems. In the author’s opinion, this comes from the fact that such people are primarily engineers with neither the natural inclination towards the ‘softer’ sciences nor the training and education needed to understand, appreciate and successfully apply human factors knowledge. The author then provided models of Usability Capability Maturity to illustrate that moving ahead is a cultural change which requires dedication and investment, and contrasted this to the salient point that the various stakeholders do not appear to have any natural inclination towards changing the present practice, in lieu of a more human-centric approach, especially when ruled by an economic reality as the maritime industry is. Having said that, this part positively concluded that there is ample room for improvement in the design of maritime systems, and that the CyClaDes project, as expressed especially by the CyClaDes framework, is an opportunity to support a positive change. To support this change guidance is provided for developing materials that would resonate with the typical engineer’s preferences for thinking and learning.

Finally, ten maritime design projects where HCD has been applied were described. Although these descriptions give the impression that HCD is gaining both momentum and traction, at least within the marine equipment design community, this impression might not be entirely accurate as it remains to be seen if these companies take measures to include HCD outside of these specific, high-profile, projects. Indicators of increased adoption might take the form of hiring or training individuals in the company staff in HCD, more consistent use of HCD consultants during design and the overall reaction to the new e-Navigation standard concerning HCD, usability testing and software quality assurance. It also remains to be seen what happens with the e-Navigation push overall and whether funding continues for these kinds of projects under e-Navigation or another name.