Engaging user community to build European Maritime Security solutions

​One of Laurea’s core competence area - service innovation and co-design – enables Laurea to address complex problems in a multidisciplinary and human-driven way. By advancing participatory approaches and methodologies, Laurea’s Research, Development and Innovation (RDI) projects utilize different forms of knowledge, collaboration of different stakeholders sharing and integrating their ideas, knowledge and resources to generate even radical innovations. Maritime security is an example of a domain, where such a collaborative approach can bring clear added value.

Building capabilities to address complex challenges, such as combating irregular migration, human smuggling, terrorism at sea, piracy, as well as arms and drug trafficking has become a high priority on Europe’s security agenda. Laurea’s extensive R&D activities in the field of security management combined with the participatory approaches to involve the different stakeholders has proved to be well-suited to develop European Maritime information sharing environment.

The research and experiences have demonstrated that securing the sea requires a day-to-day collaboration activities among European actors of maritime surveillance. Since 2014, Laurea has been a partner in a European Commission FP7 Framework funded project, EUCISE2020 (Common Information Sharing Environment), which is a joint effort of 37 civilian and military organizations with an aim to create a political, organizational and legal environment aiming at enabling efficient information sharing across the seven relevant sectors/user communities (transport, environmental protection, fisheries control, border control, general law enforcement, customs and defense). The environment is based on existing and also on future surveillance systems/networks with a view to achieve a fully operational CISE by 2020. Laurea has played a central role in promoting stakeholder engagement and interaction between the project partners by applying principles of service design and participatory approach.

EUCISE2020 has played a central role in establishing an EU-wide network for stronger information sharing. Nevertheless, despite the significant initiatives that are being taken at EU level to address the challenges related to Maritime surveillance, there is still need for further development. In particular, the issue of usability of available data for the improved situational awareness among the Maritime security actors has remained an issue.  The large amount of ‘raw data’ available today are not usable by systems supporting maritime security since they are not accessible at the same time and, often, they are not interoperable.

Laurea is a partner in a HORIZON2020 project MARISA which seeks to address the need to strengthen the information exchange to optimize the surveillance of the EU maritime area and its maritime borders. This 30-month project started on May 2017, and it brings together expertise from 22 organisations from 9 countries. The overarching goal of MARISA project is to provide the security communities operating at sea with a data fusion toolkit, which makes available a suite of methods, techniques and modules to correlate and fuse various heterogeneous and homogeneous data and information from different sources with the aim to improve information exchange, situational awareness, decision-making and reaction capabilities.

Laurea is responsible for the user need analysis and development of the operational scenarios, as well as, the ethical context and societal impact analysis. Along with co-creation R&D Ethics is one of the core competences in Laurea. The ethical requirements are essential inputs to the development of the proposed solution, alongside with the end-user requirements. Furthermore, the role of the end-users is central to the outcome of the whole MARISA project. By strong involvement of end users operating in the maritime context throughout the project life cycle, the international consortium seeks to maximize the utility, relevance and impact of the project outcomes.

Revised Design Science Research Model (DSRM) Process used in MARISA, source: Eteläaho, E., Tuomi, P., & Pirinen, R. Improvement suggestions for the DSRM model.

R&D based Learning Process utilized in MARISA

Hence, MARISA project complements the other EU projects such as CISE, by taking the benefits of the already established models, services and information sharing initiatives to the next level in strong collaboration with the user community. In fact, as an example of the close collaboration, the representatives of the MARISA and EUCISE are organizing their project meetings at Laurea in Finland during 27 – 29 June, 2017. During the conferences the partners from both projects are also brought together to share experiences and best practices relevant to European Maritime Security domain.


MARISA project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 740698.


More information about the MARISA project:

Rauno Pirinen, project manager

Modified 6/21/2017 2:19 PM