During the last week of February 40 students from the Economics Faculty and the Engineering Faculty of Genoa travelled to Barcelona to participate in a special edition of a course called “Maritime Trade and Logistics: Theory and Applications”. This course, organized by the Escola Europea de Short Sea Shipping (2E3S) with the collaboration of the University of Genoa, was the result of an agreement signed on the 16th of May 2015 between the two training centers.
Providing training in intermodal transport and logistics, and demonstrating port operations, terminals facilities up close, the course offered deep insight into maritime logistics, its actors, roles and market segmentation and trends, and fostered critical thinking when calculating and analyzing costs in logistics operations. The large group of Italian students could thus deepen their practical expertise in different aspects of maritime transport.
The course begun in Genoa with classes given by Silvio Ferrando (Marketing and International Relations Manager of the Port Authority of Genoa), Claudia Caballini (lecturer from the Engineering Faculty) and Hilda Chiara (lecturer from the Economics Faculty). The group then travelled to Barcelona to continue the training in one of the central ports of the Mediterranean and experience the operations first-hand. This unique training approach is what distinguishes the Escola from other training centers in Europe – the combination of theoretical knowledge with hands-on experience through practical workshops in port terminals – and therewith what encourages collaboration with universities around Europe.
The classes were given in both Italian and English by a teaching staff composed of ten Spanish and Italian specialists from the transport and logistics sectors. Each expert shared their specialist knowledge of the maritime sector throughout lectures which ranged from terminal management, competitive analysis, E-Maritime, port technologies, to logistics and environment, amongst others. The teaching staff comprised Adriana Díaz (Projects, Knowledge & Quality Manager of 2E3S), Silvio Ferrando, Mireia Fort (Commercial & Marketing Assistant of BEST- Barcelona Europe South Terminal), Catalina Grimalt (Information Systems Manager of the Port de Barcelona), Xavier LLuch (an international consultant in the field of logistics and transport, and one of 2E3S regular teachers), Levi Minzi (financial and administrative consultant of the European Economic Interest Grouping of Asti), Giovanni Pirrone (Director of the Operations of the Grimaldi Terminal in Barcelona), Eduard Rodés (Director of 2E3S) and Antonio Vargas (ex-General Director of Grimaldi Logistics Spain and a regular teacher of 2E3S).
Alongside the theory, the group could also experience practical aspects of the concepts introduced through workshops to the Barcelona Port’s terminals (including BEST), practical activities as well as two case studies: “European Intermodality and Short Sea Shipping” and “Import of an ISO container from outside the EU and associated logistics”. This teaching method, tried and tested over the Escola’s 10 years of operation, aims to help the students absorb the theory by putting what they learn during the lectures into practice.
Over the past three years the University of Genoa has regularly included the MOST courses in their curriculum, adding value to its degrees and offering practical and unique experiences to their students through Escola’s classrooms. This course further cemented the growing relationship between the Catalan training center and the Italian university, as explained by Eduard Rodés, director of 2E3S:“The participation of students from the faculties of engineering and economics of the University of Genoa in our courses is indeed very enriching for all parties. It is a relationship that was built over the years and extends to other centers that collaborate with the Escola. It is a Mediterranean project that combines a solid training method with maritime and port values and a common approach that distinguishes us from others. Education is a very powerful tool for progress, and collaboration between training centers is a need that exists today and will continue to do so in the future.”
2E3S hopes to continue to collaborate with more Genovan and Italian centers in the coming years. Over the course of the week Eduard Rodés attended various working sessions with Hilda Chiara from the University of Genoa and Jesús E. Martinez from Tecnocampus Mataró to consider news forms of collaboration between the three centers in the near future. 2E3S’s mediation has already helped the University of Genoa and Tecnocampus Mataró to sign a collaboration agreement for the University degree in Maritime Logistics and Trade, paving the way for this trans-Mediterranean integration through student exchanges between the two universities.