Regulating Autonomous Ships—Concepts, Challenges and Precedents

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The article seeks to contribute to the development of a conceptual

framework for the ongoing regulatory discussions on autonomous

ships at the International Maritime Organization (IMO). It elaborates

on the distinction between the level of autonomy and the level of

manning and highlights the sliding scale that features in both.

Certain building blocks that are needed for regulating autonomous

ships are identified, followed by an assessment of how key existing

IMO rules deal with the challenges and an analysis of available

precedents. The conclusion is that the on-going exercise is unique,

almost without precedent, and that the work that has just started

at IMO, so far at least, fails to address the most important—and

complex—regulatory challenges.

Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)141–169
JournalOcean Development and International Law
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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