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Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
WED1.2: European critical infrastructures: which analysis framework for supporting effective decision making?
Time: Wednesday, 29/Aug/2012: 8:30am - 10:00am
Session Chair: Georgios GIANNOPOULOS, Joint Research Centre
Location: Flüela

Session organized by the Joint Research Centre


European critical infrastructures: which analysis framework for supporting effective decision making?


Joint Research Centre, European Commission

In the last decade, Europe started a number of initiatives for the protection of critical infrastructures. These initiatives are collected under the European Programme for Critical Infrastructure Protection, a multi annual program elaborated in 2006 by the Justice and Home Affairs council. One of the legislative pillars of EPCIP is the European Council Directive 2008/114/EC, which sets the scope of critical infrastructure to the energy and the transportation sectors and it also defines the common criteria for identification and designation of European Critical Infrastructure (ECI) and the assessment of the need to improve their protection.

The EC Directive just entered a review process (January 2012) through which some of its statements and objectives are going to be reformulated. The Joint Research Centre is involved in this review process providing technical support. Within this framework JRC aims at proposing an analysis framework for ECIs. The objective of the analysis framework is primarily to serve decision makers and CI operators. A few requirements, which the framework should possess, are: (1) Ability to handle with complexity in a unique modelling framework: The complexity of an infrastructure is in its architecture and in the heterogeneity of the components. A faithful representation would ask resorting to as many modelling frameworks as the number of sectors involved. The objective here is that of representing of the infrastructure within a unique modelling framework, cross-sector, complete and simple to apply. The idea is to abstract the representation to the (inter)dependencies that are established at the interface of every system. (2) Provide recommendations for the improvement of resilience: The analysis outcome has to meet the demand of decision makers and operators, timely and effectively. The recommendations will have to pinpoint the vulnerabilities that impair the resilience of the infrastructure, as these are perceived by the operators. The existence of a common modelling and analysis framework will also make it possible to assess the impact of the recommendations both in term of costs and benefits. (3): Perform the analysis in synergy with other analysis tools: The analysis framework should not be conceived as standalone but it can be integrated with other analysis tools. The idea is to perform the analysis in consecutive steps. For instance, the first step will return those scenarios (i.e. caused by failure propagation) that challenge the infrastructure resilience. The second step will select a number of these scenarios for further analysis, e.g. by assessing their risk, or simulating the quantities of interest.

The session will have the contribution of JRC, from the directive issues to the framework proposal as sketched in the background, and a number of contributions from experts in the field of critical infrastructures. The experts will provide their standpoint with respect to the EC viewpoint and present their own solution. The presented topics have to deal with every stage of the assessment process of a critical infrastructure, from the modeling to the analysis, including the representation of interdependencies, the identification of vulnerability, the resilience analysis and risk assessment.

The expected outcomes of the sessions are twofold: (1) provide a fairly complete state of the art for the assessment of critical infrastructures; (2) to share JRC (and EC) standpoint with the standpoints of the scientific community.

This session at IDRC Davos will be the first event organized by EC and JRC on the topic CI. The JRC (under the EC endorsement) intends fostering similar initiatives on a regular basis, at Davos or by other relevant events. In a longer run, JRC is considering the option of establishing a permanent EU center for the assessment (risk, resilience, interdependencies) of European critical infrastructure, in analogy with other existing initiatives (e.g. the ETH Risk Center and the IRGC CH).

A resilience based analysis framework for critical infrastructures protection


Joint Research Centre, Italy, Republic of

Critical Infrastructures are essential for supporting everyday functions of modern societies. These functions depend on an extensive network of infrastructures that nowadays are highly connected, forming a complex mesh of interdependencies which facilitate exchange of services of various forms. The benefits from networking are accompanied by new threats and risks. In particular, disruptions in certain infrastructures can cause rippling effects that may render unstable the whole network.

The issue of preserving and protecting infrastructures is a priority for modern societies and economies. In the last decade, Critical Infrastructure Protection has been at the spotlight of European policies. Several initiatives have been undertaken within the framework of the European Programme for Critical Infrastructure Protection (EPCIP), the multi annual program elaborated in 2006 by European Commission. The legislative instrument of EPCIP is the European Council Directive 2008/114/EC on the identification and designation of European Critical Infrastructure (ECI) and the assessment of the need to improve their protection. Within this framework JRC has a central role to provide technical support to the policy makers (Commission DGs). Proposing an analysis framework for ECIs, with the objective of providing tools primarily for decision makers and CI operators is clearly a task that clearly fits to the role of JRC.

Critical infrastructure disruptions: a generic system dynamic approach for decision support


11Karlsruhe Institute for Technology, Institute for Nuclear and Power Technology, Karlsruhe, Germany, Federal Republic of; 2Karlsruhe Institute for Technology, Institute for Industrial Production, Karlsruhe, Germany, Federal Republic of

Our daily life highly depends on the smooth operation of critical infrastructures (CIs) such as energy supply, information and communication, banking and finance, emergency services and transportation systems. CI failures can have catastrophic consequences. For instance, a severe storm with heavy snowfall led to a large-scale power breakdown in Germany in autumn 2005. The incident caused high economic losses and had serious impacts on the health sector and, transportation. Crisis management for CI failures is a challenge for decision makers, as CIs are highly interlaced. Since CI disruptions are rare, the knowledge about how CI disruptions can develop over time is limited. The effects to the CI network may extinguish or increase over time. These developments are not addressed in static approaches, which are often used to model CI disruptions. Crisis managers are under considerable pressure to manage these disruptions. For effective and efficient decision support a transparent analyses of the dynamic development of CI disruptions are needed. Our presentation demonstrates how a holistic system dynamics approach can be used to facilitate strategic decisions in the management of CI disruptions. System dynamics is a method that is designed to understand complex systems and to analyze the impact of a decision over time. By combining the analyses’ results with visualization tools, the understanding of the situation’s development can be enhanced. Our approach covers all CI sectors and subsectors to generate an overview of how the impact of a disruption propagates through the CI network. By using a holistic approach multiple alignments to different CI disruption scenarios are possible. This enables crisis managers to plan response strategies. The presentation illustrates our work to support CI disruption management and discusses the opportunities and limits of our approach. Additionally, feedback elicited in an expert workshop is presented and directions for future research are outlined.

Security and safety of cross-border infrastructure

Sergio OLIVERO1, Massimo MIGLIORINI1, Federico STIRANO1, Fabrizio CALANDRI1, Umberto FAVA2

1SiTI - Istituto Superiore sui Sistemi Territoriali per l'Innovazione, Italy, Republic of; 2Lamoro - Langhe Monferrato Roero, Italy, Republic of

Typical cross-border infrastructures are transport communication networks and high voltage electricity transmission grids. These infrastructures represent a strategic economic, social and environmental asset and their loss or even temporary failure may imply relevant impacts on health and welfare of people. As a consequence, cross-border infrastructures must be protected against multiple threats, typically classified into natural (landslides, floods, etc.) and human threats (sabotage, accidents, etc.). A possible approach to improve cross-border infrastructures security and safety consists of three phases. Firstly, cross-border infrastructures must be identified and characterized in terms of assets, vulnerabilities, critical points, resources, threats, protocols, also through a strong interactions with local bodies and authorities. Secondly, the collected information has to be filled in a cross-border database, with the object to make available to stakeholders an integrated and geo-referenced information platform to be constantly consulted and updated. The third and final step consists of developing a risk and vulnerability assessment methodology (RVA), in order to evaluate immediate impacts as well as long-term consequences when a single cross-border infrastructure is compromised, and to evaluate the efficiency and the effectiveness of protocols, resources, instruments and equipment to deal with identified security threats. RVA must then be tested in different case studies (cross-border infrastructures related to energy and mass transport) and refined, also conducting simulations to assess the cross-border operational capability to prevent threats and/or to mitigate consequences. At the end of the validation process, RVA can provide managers and authorities with a decision-making support tool to plan adequate security investment policies and to enhance the efficiency of security protocols, technologies and measures. This paper shows an innovative approach followed by SiTI and Lamoro in North Western Italy across the boundary between Italy and France, simulating a complex system also allowing for a detailed analysis of applicable laws and procedures.

Decision making for resilience in critical infrastructure governance


Center for Security Studies, ETH, Zurich, Switzerland

The growing interconnectedness of global society has increased the number and complexity of services supporting society, and has increased societal sensitivity to disturbances that might threaten the delivery of those services. Critical infrastructure provides and supports many key services that globalised society depends on, and ensuring these infrastructures are secure and ‘resilient’ has become an important goal, both in the public and private sectors. This paper explores what critical infrastructure resilience might mean, and outlines a methodology to investigate how decision makers could systematically incorporate resilience into critical infrastructure security-related policy decision making and practice.

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