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There are several future game-changers, from emerging trends in automation to the digital, physical and sustainable spheres of port development that will result in drastic changes to the maritime industry over the coming decade.

What will ports look like in 2040 and how will the next waves of disruptive innovation impact the role of Harbour Masters?

Global maritime freight transportation revenue is expected to grow from $166 billion last year to over $205 billion in 2023 and with spending in transportation and logistics on the Internet-of-Things (IoT) and smart systems projected to be over $130 billion in 2020, now is the time to identify what ports and port operations, including Harbour Masters, will look like in 2040.

The shipping and maritime industry has developed a highly skilled, passionate and vibrant next generation of talent and the IHMA is delighted to launch its inaugural Innovation Pitching Competition in 2020 to promote and advance the ideas of these disruptors and future leaders.

Do you have a game-changing idea or innovation that could disrupt the maritime industry?

The IHMA Young Maritime Professionals Innovation Pitching Competition invites all maritime professionals, 35 years and under, to submit an innovative idea that could disrupt the industry with the next wave of change to shape a better future.

Finalists will have the opportunity to present their ideas to industry leaders at the IHMA 2020 Congress with the winner announced at the Gala Dinner.

Submit your concept for an opportunity to pitch your innovative idea to today’s industry leaders. Young maritime professionals* of all disciplines are invited to submit a 400-600word abstract detailing your idea.

The maritime industry continues to make significant economic, environmental and social contributions. Reflecting this, we invite concepts that target any aspect of port and marine operations– technical and engineering, customer service, strategic business planning, marketing, technological opportunities. If you have an idea that may increase the industry’s safety, improve engineering or maintenance practices, better industry connectivity or ultimately offer suppliers and customers an improved service – we want to hear from you.

Submit your innovative idea, large or small and contribute to a better future for port operations.

Key dates for the IHMA 2020 Pitching Competition:

  • 7 May 2019: The Next Wave Pitching Competition opens
  • 20 September 2019: Deadline for the Next Wave Pitching competition entries
  • 21 October 2019: Finalists announced for the Next Wave Pitching competition
  • 25 March 2020: Pitching Competition session on IHMA 2020 conference stage
  • 25 March 2020: Next Wave Pitching Competition Winner announced at IHMA 2020 Gala Dinner

Entries must be 400-600 words and include a concept title, name/contact details, institution and qualification underway/completed (including completion date), the issue being addressed and the solution/idea proposed. Final presentations can include multi and/or mixed media.

Entries will be judged by the IHMA Organising Committee on the benefits the idea could provide, its quality and relevance. The Organising Committee’s decision is final. No feedback will be provided to unsuccessful applicants.
The Finalists will be announced in October 2019.

Eligibility: Young maritime professionals*
Open to all maritime professionals who are 35yrs or under (as at 26 March 2020).

Finalists will receive:
Finalists will be given 5-10 minutes to present their idea to our select panel of maritime leaders/judges at the 2020 IHMA Congress. The winner will be announced at the IHMA Gala Dinner on the 25 March 2020.

Finalists will receive complimentary attendance at the IHMA 2020 Congress and 5 nights’ accommodation at the Congress venue, the Hotel Grand Chancellor.

The winner will receive:
The 2020 IHMA Pitching Competition winner will receive a speaking position and complimentary all-access pass to the 2022 IHMA Congress.

The winner will be decided by combining the scores of the judges (50%) and those of the audience (50%) as calculated via the audience vote on the event app.

The IHMA have secured a corporate sponsor for the Pitching Competition.
All intellectual property (IP) rights existing at the time of the Pitching Competition remain vested in the owning party. Once the Pitching Competition has taken place, the finalists grant this corporate sponsor a licence to use the IP and the exclusive right to take steps to commercialise the Pitching Competition ideas, in consultation with the finalists, for a period of 12 months after the 2020 Congress ends.

If you have queries, please contact Tina Karas, IHMA 2020 Conference Manager via or + 61 (2) 9080 4408 or + 61 (0) 431 442 504