Dr. Ryan Lloyd

Dr. Ryan Lloyd

Geollect leader refines geospatial intelligence technology for more sustainable maritime operations

Maritime STAR | Awarded by Spire Logo

Spire Maritime is recognizing extraordinary people in the maritime industry. We’re highlighting people working to achieve extraordinary tasks and enable industry and government entities to predict rapid changes in global issues and measure the associated risks to not only build a better maritime industry, but also maintain strong supply chains and build more sustainable operations.

When Dr. Ryan Lloyd joined UK leader in geospatial intelligence technologies, Geollect, he knew working across multiple sectors to deliver versatile product solutions providing dynamic insights and geospatial awareness would have its challenges. Dr. Ryan leads Research and Development at Geollect while overseeing end-to-end development of proprietary products to help define technical vision and strategic development. Dr. Ryan draws from a breadth of experience as a scientist and geophysicist with training in utilizing satellite remote sensing data to observe and model physical volcano and earthquake processes.

We sat down with Dr. Ryan and asked him a few personal questions to get to know this Maritime Star on a more personal level. Here’s a bit of that conversation:

Question: What is your favorite port of call and why?
Dr. Ryan: Kotor, Montenegro. There is a great seafood restaurant at the end of the wharf.

Question: What do you love about working in the Maritime industry?
Dr. Ryan: I love that there is so much to learn, the breadth of the challenges, and the inherent complexity. The “maritime industry” is multifaceted, and at Geollect we often sit at the cross-roads of many different elements: from insurance and finance, to law enforcement and defense, global supply chains, and fishing. It’s fascinating to see how many of these players have a different view on the same thing, and how data, such as AIS, can be used to understand activities and be used to derive insights.

Question: Where do you find your inspiration?
Dr. Ryan: In my opinion, the more you know, the more people you meet, and more things you expose yourself to, means you’re in a better position to connect those dots, and the more inspiration you might find.

Question: What’s the single most important thing people should know about your field?
Dr. Ryan: At the moment, I think it is that having an “AI” solution does not mean you have the right solution for you. Sometimes it’s like using a hammer to put in a screw, yes, you’ll get it to work, but there’s a better tool out there. People should also know they do not have to accept a “black box”: ethical AI is a thing and transparency, explainability, and a lack of bias are important pillars of this.

Question: What is your favorite ship type and why?
Dr. Ryan: I think it must be oil tankers. Tankers are the vessels that come up most in our sanctions work, and there is so often an interesting story to uncover. It is the activity of some of these vessels that means we can really get stuck in utilizing all of the datasets, technology, and investigative skills we have on offer.

Question: If you were shipwrecked and left stranded on an island, what things would you want to have with you?
Dr. Ryan: I can’t help but feel obliged to say Geonius. Amongst other things, Geonius is our tool for monitoring vessels, so it would be perfect to know when to let the flare off to be rescued. I’d probably also require that flare, thinking about it.

Question: What is one change you would like to see happen in the Maritime industry?
Dr. Ryan: The change I am most interested in seeing happen (and indeed being part of!) is decarbonization and the transition towards zero-emission shipping. As I’ve said above, my biggest interests are around process, so I’m especially interested to see how this will be achieved, and how technology will play a role. The transition will involve changes and problem solving across technology, finance, infrastructure, policy, and culture. It will necessitate real collaboration, and I am interested to see how the already complex and heterogeneous maritime industry will adapt.

Two Truths and a Lie:

(*the lie is at the bottom of the article)

  1. Last year, Spotify told me I was in the top 0.5% of Taylor Swift listeners
  2. I once went out for dinner with a group of North Korean scientists
  3. I have a Morse code tattoo across my left arm

Question: What is your favorite cause?
Dr. Ryan: There are so many great causes out there, it is hard to choose a favorite. Throughout November though, Geollect are supporting Movember in support of men’s health. Check out our fundraising page.

Thank you Dr. Ryan!

A big thank you to Dr. Ryan for taking the time to meet with us and for his extraordinary efforts to raise awareness about freight logistics. Your efforts truly make you a Maritime Star!

Learn more about Dr. Ryan at LINKEDIN and at Geollect.

*The lie was: “I do not have the tattoo. Although open to ideas of what that code should say…?!”

Please send us your ideas and recommendations for our next Maritime Star. We’re always interested in learning about innovative approaches to solve maritime industry problems.