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Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
THU1.2: Recent and future developments in EU Security Research . . From a counter-terrorism focus towards a wider support for natural and accidental large scale crisis or disasters. All hazard approach.
Time: Thursday, 30/Aug/2012: 8:30am - 10:00am
Session Chair: Tristan Daniel SIMONART, European Commission
Location: Dischma

Session organized by the European Commission


Recent and future developments in EU security research. From a counter-terrorism focus towards a wider support for natural and accidental large scale crisis or disasters.

Tristan SIMONART1, Peter AMBS2, David ALEXANDER3, Heiko WERNER4, Hans-Christian GRAN5, Delilah ALKHUDHAIRY6, Chaim RAFALOWSKI7

1European Commission, ENTR; 2Interpol; 3GRF Davos; 4THW; 5FFI, Norway; 6JRC; 7Magen David Adom

As a consequence of 9/11 and terrorist attacks in Europe in the recent decade, the EU has concentrated significant security research efforts (as well as policies) in the area of Security, CBRN and terrorism.

More recently, in particular under the new Lisbon Treaty, security research funding has been covering a wider scope of threats including food, water and environmental hazards, not only linked to terrorist events but also to criminal activities, large scale disasters or accidents which may have a huge impact on citizens and the resilience of the society.

This new emphasis is due to an increasing concern at political and citizen level on the more frequent occurrence of several kinds of natural or accidental crisis and , as a consequence, a strong wish to increase the EU resilience capability against such threats.

The session will be animated by security research experts and consortia currently carrying activities in the area as well as contribution from EC services. The speakers will address the question from different perspectives.

EC representatives will also describe future research activities in that area.

The expected outcomes of the session are twofold: (1) provide an overview of EU security research current and future support in the area of crisis and disaster management; (2) provide links with ongoing and future EU policies and research priorities based on an all hazard approach.

FASTID project - FAST and efficient international disaster victim IDentification

Peter AMBS


The FAST and efficient international disaster victim IDentification (FASTID) Project was launched on 1 April 2010 with an overall budget of almost EUR 3 million, co-funded by the European Commission under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) – Theme no. 10 Security. The project will establish an international system to manage enquiries concerning missing persons and unidentified bodies in the event of disasters as well as day-to-day policing. With its approach the project is under way to create the first ever police database to identify and link missing persons and unidentified bodies on an international level.

The MPUB database at INTERPOL's General Secretariat in Lyon will have decentralized access for use in conjunction with disasters and everyday policing.

It will be based on INTERPOL’s Ante-Mortem (AM) Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) and Post-Mortem (PM) DVI forms together with  Yellow Notice (missing persons) and  Black Notice (unidentified bodies) forms. Currently accepted minimum international standards for the collection of data to identify victims and software will serve as a starting point, while rich Internet application methods and additional identification techniques will enhance the system. The database will include its own search capabilities for some identifiers and will interface with other databases for others, for example, fingerprints, DNA. It will be accessible to INTERPOL  National Central Bureaus and DVI teams via INTERPOL’s  I-24/7 and https (secured Internet) communication systems. It will be integrated and synchronized with INTERPOL’s  I-link in order to ensure coherent and consistent data in both systems.

Security research from an end user perspective


German Federal Agency for Technical Relief, Germany, Federal Republic of

The presentation will describe the end users view of THW on Security Research. The governmental objectives for Security Research are to improve the use of security research by security authorities and to improve networking between governmental authorities and research institutes.

Arguments for a THW involvement in Security Research are the promotion of research as the clearly articulated will of the Federal Government (coalition agreement) and the EU (7th & 8th Research Framework Program). The Involvement of the THW as an end user influences research results. Also the participation in Security Research will support our work through the transfer of know-how to our organization, the funding of facilities, equipment and exercises and will promote our external image as a modern emergency service.

Future Security Research topics for THW are the protection of critical infrastructure, climate change, operating in an NBC environment, localization and rescue in mud and water, sensor systems used in debris and analysis of debris, securing buildings, reconnaissance, control / management of relief operations, prototyping, treatment and transport of drinking water, psychosocial emergency care and environmental protection.

Preparedness of CBRNE incident management within the EU

Hans-Christian GRAN

FFI, Norway

Preparedness for CBRNE incident management is one of the most important areas of EU Security research today. Wide range of possible scenarios involving chemical, biological, radioactive/nuclear and explosive substances require technologically advanced preparedness tools and organizationally complex preparedness mechanisms. EU research in the area has therefore moved from capability projects towards integration and demonstration projects, aiming to integrate preparedness tools and procedures into functioning systems capable of responding to all sorts of CBRNE events. One such integration project is the PRACTICE Toolbox project, Preparedness and Resilience Against Terrorist Attacks using Integrated Concepts and Equipment. Briefly described, the PRACTICE project concept is to develop an architecture of event parameters and preparedness functions required to manage different aspects of CBRN incidents before, during and after a CBRN event. The architecture will be universal in nature and easily adaptable to connect to different national systems, pre-existing crisis management tools and opens to include newly developed technologies and procedures. In this way, PRACTICE Toolbox will remedy the existing fragmentation in Europe today and enable a truly integrated approach to CBRN preparedness. Whether we talk about tools for detection and identification of substances, forensics, victim management procedures, societal resilience development tools, training activities, decontamination tools, medical countermeasures procedures, et cetera; all conceivable preparedness and resilience functions needed in different EU societies will be connectable to a single integrated system approach developed by a European consortium and funded by EU Fp7 program.

Crisis Management: Needs, Gaps and Opportunities

delilah Helen AL KHUDAIRY

European Commission, Italy, Republic of

The number of disaster events is trending up. The first half of 2011 already produced more disasters than most years before 2006. In 2011, weather accounted for about 90% of the 820 recorded natural disasters, which included floods, tornadoes and storms. This increasing trend adds a strain on practitioners engaged in emergency preparedness and response. Decision-makers and practitioners need trusted, reliable and sustainable information and tools that they can easily integrate in their operational workflow to help them to be better prepared for recognizing emerging threats and for responding to them in a timelier manner.

The European Commission’s in-house science service, the Joint Research Centre, is engaged in research activities that are contributing to enhancing the capability of the EU and its partners in disaster resilience, anticipation and response. These research activities are underpinned by the recently inaugurated European Crisis Management Laboratory, ECML, which serves as a R&D testing and validation facility for ICT focused solutions, integrating devices, applications, and crisis management related information sources to support crisis management needs including threats analysis, situational awareness, early warning and collaborative decision making. The ECML supports tests in a range of crisis scenarios, from intentional threats and natural disasters to health crises. Visual analytics for improving information analysis and visualisation in large video screen environments form an integral part of the Laboratory’s R&D programme. One of the Laboratory’s core goals is to build cooperation with European research facilities, industry, users in governmental organisations and others to establish a network of Pan - European research and testing facilities focusing on ICT for crisis management. One of the expected achievements of the network is a contribution to addressing gaps in standards for data, threat assessments, early warning and organisational interoperability as well as guidelines and criteria for experimental design and technology benchmarking.

Crisis management and security research – an end user perspective


Magen David Adom

Over the last 50 years the world of crisis management has changed dramatically – the geo political global changes have merged the "civil defense" with the (more locally focused) "crisis managers". Urbanization and economic changes have made the cities larger and more vulnerable to disasters, more severe weather phenomena are affecting more population, large scale pandemics became a threat, terrorism has become a major concern and militaries have become a major player in international humanitarian assistance, just to mention some of the more evident changes. One would ask in such an environment, one would argue what the role of "security research" is? (1) In an environment of reduced budgets, ensure that products and technologies are multipurpose by nature; (2) to better understand competing values, and thus create better acceptability of products and methods; (3) try to bridge the fragmentation in the crisis management world by encouraging the creation of more "generic" solution; (4) try to minimize the "high media attention" effect, by a scientific understanding of needs and gaps; (5) help the end users community be heard, and bring together research, industry and end users to benefit together from the results; (6) bring into "security" the knowledge of other disciplines as health, earth sciences, chemistry, logistics; (7) promote creation of solutions in areas where there is a built in market failure due to the size of the market or its limited number of procuring agencies (e.g. CBRN); (8) assist in the creation of a long term vision of "crisis management" issues, especially those with global impact. Those issues are beyond the planning spam of the organizations, and beyond their analysis tools.

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