This volume collects a number of papers from Scholars of various countries dedicated to the study of the issue, mainly interpretative, but with relevant implications in practice, concerning the definition of “ship” and the extension of its field of application, keeping in mind that “ship” is a clear ex-ample of legal pluri-qualification of the same phenomenal element. The progress in science and technology, fueled by recent needs of the market, has led to the introduction of multiple forms of new and peculiar types of floating units or marine structures. To this is added the need to pro-vide a qualification to a number of already existing floating crafts, which, be-ing devoid, to date, of a juridical placement, seem to be without a legal disci-pline. A purely traditional approach to the matter can not give an adequate solution to the issue concerning the classification of these new crafts. The an-swer to the question as to whether they may or may not be included within the genus of “ship”, as generally understood and codified in the regulations of the sector, is far from obvious. The complexity of the matter is also due to the absence, at international level, of a common definition of “ship”. The term, in fact, is used with vari-ous meanings, each of them clearly related to the scope of application and purpose of the convention, regulation or set of rules, which defines it. This book intends to provide a wider picture of the relevant sources and practices, giving us the chance to compare the provisions of the numer-ous national, EU and international regulations, deepening the topic through a perspective which goes beyond mere analysis of each single set of rules. Through the method of comparative analysis, the Authors, highlighting the differences existing between the various legal systems, and identifying their strengths and weaknesses, took the opportunity to stimulate discussion on the most critical issues, thus mutually enriching their own research. The Authors developed their own research with the primary objective of providing an innovative and practical tool, which, paying special attention also to the needs of ship operators, will be useful for them in order to have a clearer vision of the risks and the forms of legal protection related to their ac-tivities. The exegetical solutions proposed by the Authors in their papers, in ad-dition to reflecting perfectly these intentions, deepen, also, the interpretative choices given by the most recent national and international case law, which has a key role in filling the regulatory gaps left by legislators. The conclusion reached by some Authors in their papers collected in this volume is in the sense of considering appropriate to adopt a broad inter-pretation of the concept of “ship”, given the need to extend, unless expressly excluded, the application, by analogy, of the national and international regula-tions provided for “ship” also to the new peculiar types of floating structures. This approach allows giving an adequate legal framework to factispecies which are without their own specific discipline, especially as regards the indemnity and insurance profiles.
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