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Jinsong ZhaoProfessor Jinsong Zhao, Science Director
PhD Maritime Law, MSc Maritime Studies, BSc Maritime Studies

Professor Jinsong Zhao is Dean of School of International Shipping, East China University of Political Science and Law, Shanghai. Jinsong received his PhD from the University of Southampton (UK), and his BSc and MSc from Dalian Maritime University (China). He is a Professor of Law at Shanghai Jiao Tong University KoGuan Law School and holds a range of titles and responsibilities in the maritime community, including arbitrator at the China Maritime Arbitration Association and at the Shanghai Arbitration Court for International Shipping, professorial research fellow at the China Ocean Development Research Centre, and guest research fellow at the Beijing University Law School Centre for Maritime Law Research.

Jinsong served as a deck officer on ocean going vessels and has worked at leading city shipping law firms in London and Hong Kong, and also in Shenzhen and Shanghai, where he practised maritime, admiralty, and insurance law under the laws of the UK, Hong Kong, and of China. Jinsong served as Director of the China Shipowners Association Legal Centre, and has a wealth of teaching, research, and practical experience in navigation technologies at sea, ship finance, maritime law, and insurance law. He has published over 100 articles, including eight SCI Journal and EI articles, and one SSCI Journal article.

pengfei-zhangPengfei Zhang, Maritime Lecturer
Master Mariner, PhD (Maritime Policy), LLM, BSc.
Telephone: +44-(0)23 8201 6785   Email:

Captain and Dr Pengfei Zhang is a qualified and experienced Master Mariner with a PhD from the University of Greenwich and rich management experience on ships and in port operations. Previously he was a deputy general manager in a shipping group, responsible for legal affairs and shipping business. He is also a qualified PRC lawyer, specialising in shipbuilding and financing, ship collisions and SNP disputes.

Whilst practising as a maritime lawyer in Shanghai AllBrights Law office, he also taught as a senior lecturer at Shanghai Maritime University (SMU). In 2011-2012, he was delegated to supervise the construction of a 48000DWT training ship for SMU, which was the largest training ship in the world. His direct working experience within a number of sectors within the maritime industry, has enabled him to examine maritime affairs from a variety of perspectives. He is currently a lecturer at Solent University and his research project is on Maritime Labour Convention 2006 and seafarers’ rights protection.

Over the last three years, Pengfei has published more than twenty journal papers, covering a list of prestigious journals and publishers, including Marine Policy, Journal of Navigation, and Springer. Publications include: ‘Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 and the Chinese Seafarers: How Far is China to Ratification?’ (2015); ‘Chinese Women Seafarers: Past, Present and Prospect’ (2015); ‘Maritime Labour Policy in China: Restructuring under the ILO's Maritime Labour Convention 2006’ (2014); ‘On Compulsory Insurance of Offshore Platforms’ Oil Pollution’ (2014);  ‘The Obligation of an Anchored Vessel to Avoid Collision at Sea‘ (2013); ‘A Proposal of International Regulations for Preventing Collision between an Offshore Platform and a Ship’ (2013); ‘A Discussion on the Responsibilities of Anchored Vessel Collision Avoidance under COLREG' (2012); ‘ An Analysis of Requirements of Vessels’ Seaworthiness' (2012); and ‘The Effect of the Provisional Provisions for Registry of Mortgage Concerning Ships under Construction' (2012). 

Richard ScottRichard Scott, Maritime Editor
MA Maritime History

Richard is the editor of Global Maritime News Weekly, which has been produced by the China Centre (Maritime) since September 2015. He is also the founder and managing director of Bulk Shipping Analysis, an independent shipping consultancy business. 

Previously, Richard was an analyst at a shipbroking company and a shipping equities analyst at a stockbroking firm. Prior to that, Richard was a dry cargo shipbroker and a member of the Baltic Exchange, negotiating deep sea tramp and bulk carrier charters. He qualified as a Member of the Chartered Institute of Transport and Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers and was awarded an MA in Maritime History from Greenwich Maritime Institute.

Throughout his career, Richard has contributed regular articles to professional shipping business journals. At Greenwich University (2010-2014) he was a lecturer in shipping economics and market analysis on the MBA Maritime Management and MA International Maritime Policy programmes. Among his academic research interests, of prime importance is China’s recent and current maritime activities, especially seaborne trade, merchant fleet, ports, shipbuilding and ship recycling.

Simon DanielsDr Simon Daniels, Senior Lecturer and Solicitor
PhD Maritime Law
Telephone: +44 (0)23 8201 4238   Email:

Simon is a Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales, with many years’ experience in criminal and civil litigation, most notably in international merchant shipping and civil aviation. In 1998 Simon diversified into commercial mediation as a Qualified Dispute Resolver and Member of the Faculty of Mediation and ADR, founded by the Academy of Experts in London. Simon was Secretary to the Academy between 2005 and 2009, and was one of the first commercial mediators who took part in the pilot mediation scheme in Central London County Court. Simon has brought his professional background to the academic field, as a senior lecturer in maritime law at Solent University, where he teaches on the Merchant Vessel Operations programme at Warsash Maritime Academy, one of the world's leading centres in training for merchant shipping professionals. Simon has close connections with maritime sectors in Hong Kong and has a strong interest in developing joint collaborative research with colleagues in China.

Jilin YeDr Jilin Ye, Lecturer
PhD Computer Aided Product Design, BEng Engineering Design and Manufacturing
Telephone: +44 (0)23 8201 3319   Email:

Prior to joining Solent University as a lecturer in engineering, Jilin held research positions at Teesside University, Loughborough University and the University of Warwick. He was involved in several successful research funding applications from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the European Union’s 6th and 7th Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (EU-FP6&7). He has published more than 35 research papers on both peer-reviewed journals and international conferences.

Jilin holds a PhD in Computer Aided Product Design from Loughborough University and a BEng in Engineering Design and Manufacturing from Tsinghua University in China. After completing his first degree, he spent several years in industry focusing on rapid prototyping and manufacturing technologies, computer integrated manufacturing, concurrent engineering, supervisory control and data acquisition and computer numerical control software systems.

His research interests include high-value manufacturing technologies, such as additive manufacturing and 3D printing, sustainable computer aided design/computer aided manufacturing, information and communication technologies for resource efficiency integration, visualisation and virtual reality, and software system applications in engineering. Jilin is currently leading the development of a research project with other members of the China Centre (Maritime) which investigates the application of the 3D printing technology in the shipping industry.

Marlene CalderonDr Marlene Calderón, Research Lecturer
PhD Risk Management, MSc Shipping, BSc Engineering
Telephone: +44 (0) 23 8201 6483   Email:

Following her postgraduate studies, Marlene became an industry and academic researcher. She has worked as a ship designer and ship building supervisor but mainly as a project consultant. The latter gave her a fantastic opportunity to carry out applied research in a broad range of topics including smart logistics and port performance, maritime safety and security, risk management, scenario and emergency planning, and occupational health for fishermen and seafarers.

She has extensive experience in coordinating and leading international networks for research and technological development projects. Most of her projects were funded by the European Commission Framework Programmes (eg, FP4, FP7, HORIZON 2020), DG EMPLOYMENT and DG MOVE. In parallel, she is an associate researcher at the University of Cardiff’s Seafarers International Research Centre (SIRC) and has worked as a lecturer at the Portuguese Maritime Academy (ENIDH). 

Marlene is an expert reviewer for the UK Institution of Occupational Safety and Work (IOSH), the European Commission and the Journal of Shipping and Ocean Engineering. She is also a member of the Reference Group Expert on Transportation and Storage at the European Skills/Competences, Qualification and Occupations (ESCO). Most of her skills were acquired while working in several countries, including Ecuador, Sweden, Denmark, UK, Belgium, Portugal and Spain, and for that reason, she highly values multiculturalism and diversity.

Along with other members of the China Centre (Maritime), Marlene is currently involved in the development of a research project which examines the benefits of using LNG as a fuel for vessels. She is keen on developing research collaborations with colleagues in Chinese maritime universities and institutions. 

Muhammad ShafiqueCaptain Muhammad Shafique, Senior Lecturer
Master Mariner, MSc, FICS, FCILT, MNI, CMarTech, IMarEST

Muhammad joined the Merchant Navy in the late seventies and, in a seagoing career spanning nearly 22 years, sailed mainly on oil, chemical and gas tankers, which, at the time, were some of the world’s largest ships. He completed all of his nautical studies, up to the level of Master, at British institutions. Upon deciding to bring his career ashore, Muhammad joined a renowned ship management company in South East Asia as general manager, however his passion for education and training saw him move further into the maritime education and training sector where he has held positions such as senior lecturer, head of industry academies and principal of a maritime college.

He is Fellow of four-world renowned professional bodies and shares his knowledge and expertise in the oil and gas industry through speaking at global seminars and conferences. Whilst working within the maritime industry, in particular oil and gas transportation, he has observed the environmental impact of oil pollution and emissions. This brought him to Solent University as researcher of alternative fuels for the maritime industry. He is also part of the SIG group of IMarEST for greener alternative fuels for the maritime industry and was recently part of a European Union project on LNG bunkering.

Nicola Pryce RobertsNicola Pryce Roberts, Senior Lecturer
Maritime Business and Law
Telephone: +44 (0)23 8201 3071   Email:

Prior to lecturing at Solent University, Nicola worked as a lawyer and before that, in a number of operational and managerial roles for AP Moller/Maersk Line and Hamburg Sud. She also has extensive experience of lecturing and running programmes at Liverpool John Moores University and lecturing in Greece and Iran. Nicola’s key research interests are ship salvage and international maritime law. She has started working for her doctorate and her research project focuses on the English laws of salvage and wreck removal.

Yuan LiYuan Li, PhD candidate
Telephone: +44 (0)23 8201 6520   Email:

Yuan is a PhD researcher in the China Centre (Maritime). She previously worked as a lecturer in the shipping law school at the East China University of Political Science and Law in Shanghai, and in 2012, she was visiting researcher at the Centre for Maritime Studies, National University of Singapore. 

Yuan studied law and maritime in China, Germany and the UK and gained her LLB from East China University of Political Science and Law, and her LLM from the University of Frankfurt, Germany. She also studied maritime at the University of Greenwich in 2014-2015. Yuan is currently working on her doctorate thesis which analyses the first Chinese maritime law in the Yuan and Song Dynasties (960-1368AD) and its impact and implications. Her research area covers international law, maritime law and policy, and (maritime) legal history. 

Jifan WangYifan Wang, PhD candidate
Telephone: +44 (0)23 8201 6965   Email:

Yifan was awarded a Bachelor of Engineering in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering in 2014 from Shanghai Maritime University, and received his MSc in Ship and Shipping Management in 2015 from Southampton Solent University. He has worked in marketing for Det Norske Veritas (DNV), China, assisting with collecting and analysing competitors’ technologies and marketing strategies. In 2008, he assisted the CEO of INTSOK China with collecting information on oil and gas companies in China and, as a research assistant, analysis of the market movement of companies.

Yifan is currently a PhD research student with Solent University in the China Centre (Maritime). His project focuses on using LNG as a marine fuel using China and Norway as cases studies.

Yifan LiaoYifan Liao, PhD candidate

Yifan joined Greenwich Maritime Institute in March 2012 to inaugurate his PhD research in ship recycling, and is currently an assistant researcher and associate member of the China Centre (Maritime). He gained experience in port, shipping and logistics operations for 17 years before becoming a maritime lawyer in 2009. He is also an arbitrator and a senior maritime economist. Yifan has been engaged in a variety of law and policy research projects that eventually contributed to the rationalisation of China’s shipping governance and direct services across the Taiwan Strait. Yifan is currently working for his doctorate on a research project which examines ship recycling policies and practices in China with reference to the policies and practices in the EU and internationally.

Captain Felipe PoleoCaptain Felipe Poleo, Research Associate
BSc, MSc, MA

Felipe is a former Master Mariner with 15 years’ seagoing experience. During this time he served on board general cargo, ro-ro and dredgers in ranks from third officer to Master. Following his career at sea he continued working in the maritime sector as a university lecturer in Venezuela, at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels, lecturing on seafaring technical subjects such as ship handling, ship stability and cargo handling. He holds a BSc in Nautical Science from the Nautical School of Venezuela; two postgraduate degrees in maritime transport and ship surveying; and an MA in maritime policy from the Greenwich Maritime Institute. He also holds a ship surveyor licence issued by the Venezuelan Maritime Administration.

Felipe was a guest lecturer in corporate social responsibility in the shipping industry at Greenwich Maritime Institute, 2005-14, an area in which he has a strong research interest, especially on the impacts and potential benefits for seafarers. In addition, he has a research interest in the global impact of China's economic development, with emphasis on the implications for the global maritime industry. Currently he is working on a project concerning maritime trade between China and developing countries. His enthusiasm and attachment to everything sea-related is summed up by his motto: “once a seafarer, always a seafarer”.

David Wilkinson, Research Associate
MA (Maritime History)

David’s background is in the offshore oil industry and the Royal Navy. He spent the majority of his oil industry career in the North Sea where he worked for Total Oil Marine, Burmah Oil, Decca Navigator and Seismograph Services Ltd in areas such as geological and geophysical exploration, rig and survey positioning, and data analysis and interpretation. Commissioned into the Royal Navy in 1971 he spent 10 years on normal naval duties before postgraduate study led to appointments in the higher management of defence, including inter alia, management development, working within the MoD Management Strategy Development Unit (a think-tank tasked with improving defence management) and lecturing at service and civilian establishments on naval management policy, strategic planning and corporate development. David received his MA in Maritime History from the Greenwich Maritime Institute and has a wide interest in maritime affairs with a developing interest in China and its emerging maritime military posture. His recent research has included an analysis of US maritime policy during the Reagan years and a critique of the 2010 UK Defence and Security Review.

Sriram RajagopalCaptain Sriram Rajagopal, Research Associate
Master Mariner

Sriram is a Master Mariner and maritime expert with more than 25 years’ experience in the industry working for prominent international shipping companies and maritime institutions, and in the merchant navy as a navigating offer and Captain with Barber Ship Management (Wilhelmsen Lines). Whilst at sea he gained expertise on a variety of ship types including container ships, car carriers, tankers, bulk carriers, general cargo and specialised vessels, such as cable laying ships and offshore support vessels.

Sriram has worked ashore in various international locations, including India, China and Hong Kong, with Anglo Eastern Ship Management. His roles included working and teaching in their offices, ships and training centres, and in shipyards as a quality, health, safety and environment superintendent, internal auditor, marine superintendent, shipyard health and safety supervisor, and training manager. As the health and safety supervisor on a project undertaken for Rio Tinto Marine, he was responsible for overseeing and implementing new health, safety and environmental standards for the construction of eight 205,000 DWT capacity bulk carriers. Following this, he worked for the Sustainable Shipping Initiative, working in close co-operation with some of the largest ship owners in the world, as well as governments, charterers, operators and classification societies. He has carried out research and consultancy for shipping organisations and has contributed to the work of the United Nations Global Compact and International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Sriram studied International Maritime Policy at the University of Greenwich, London and undertook an internship at the IMO headquarters in London, where he worked on ‘The Polar Code and its Impact on Nations, Seafarers, Ships and Maritime Safety’. He was a contributing author for the Nautical Institute’s flagship publication Command, and has spoken at a number of international conferences. Sriram has visited numerous ports in China and trained Chinese seafarers. He has a keen interest in maritime research, maritime policy in general and a particular interest in research on China's 21st Century Maritime Silk Road initiative (21世纪海上丝绸之路). 

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