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The University of Southampton
Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute

Madison  Stevens PhD Studentship in Law and Risk Regulation: A Case Study of Solid Bulk Cargo Liquefaction

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Hi I'm Madison Stevens and I am studying within the Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute at the University of Southampton.

Law and Regulation cannot be studied in isolation. Inter-disciplinary research can inform more effective regulatory decisions.

I studied Law at undergraduate level at the University of Southampton, graduating with a LLB (Hons) in 2019. Since then, I have also obtained a LLM in Insurance Law where I explored areas of maritime law before beginning my PhD in September 2020.

The PhD topic focuses on how the risk of solid bulk cargo liquefaction can be effectively regulated. Solid Bulk cargo liquefaction is a phenomenon whereby cargo transforms from a solid state to liquid-like state due to when the moisture levels are higher than those acceptable for transport. When such liquefaction occurs, the cargo can shift in the hold of the vessel. Over time, this increases the angle of the list, threatening the vessel’s stability. Current regulation on the risk takes the form of the IMSBC Code. Yet, the risk continues to materialise, costing seafarers their lives.

Due to the perceived failures of the international regulation, one of the areas my research focuses on is the potential for private governance of parties involved in the sale and shipment of cargoes which may liquefy.

My supervisory team includes Professor Emily Reid and Professor James Davey.

My PhD just one part of a wider, inter-disciplinary project on the risk of solid bulk cargo liquefaction. The project examines the risk from regulatory, engineering and data and communication perspectives with the aim of producing a well-rounded solution to the problem.

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