Stiftelsen Det Norske Veritas (DNV) is part of a classification society whose objective is “Safeguarding life, property, and the environment”. DNV’s history goes back to 1864, when the foundation was established in Norway to inspect and evaluate the technical condition of Norwegian merchant vessels. DNV describes itself as a provider of services for managing risk, also providing the risk management tool EasyRisk Manager.
A classification society is a non-governmental organization that establishes and maintains technical standards for the construction and operation of ships and offshore structures. Marine vessels and structures are classified according to the soundness of their structure and design purpose.
There are more than 50 marine classification organizations worldwide. The largest classification societies, DNV, Lloyd’s Register, Bureau Veritas and the American Bureau of Shipping, conducts research at their own international facilities in order to improve the effectiveness of their rules and to investigate the safety of new innovations in shipbuilding.
Together with Lloyd’s Register and American Bureau of Shipping, DNV is one of three major companies in the classification society business. DNV has its headquarters in Høvik, Bærum, just outside Oslo, Norway. It has 300 offices in 100 countries, with 8,400 employees. Important industries where the company operates include ship transport, energy (including wind and solar), aviation, automotive, finance, food, health care and information technology. It also conducts research in several fields where it operates.
Classification societies may be authorized to inspect and issue certifications on behalf of the state under whose flag the ships are registered (worldwide) to ensure an acceptable degree of stability, safety, environmental impact, etc., that marine vessels and structures are built and maintained in compliance with relevant established high standards required for their class and are therefore responsible for classifying ships, submarines, oil platforms, oil rigs, other offshore structures, and other marine structures. To avoid liability, they explicitly take no responsibility for the safety, fitness for purpose, or seaworthiness of marine structures.