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Policy

Background

Europe has entered a new phase in its history, marked by major political, demographic, social and economic evolutions. The challenge facing the EU-25 is to adapt and prosper within this changing environment, whilst being guided by the fundamental values and objectives of the Union.

Security is one particular global challenge that has recently come to the fore due to world events and societal changes. Europe needs to invest in a ?security culture? that harnesses the combined and relatively untapped strengths of the ?security? industry and the research community in order to effectively and innovatively address existing and future security challenges.

Challenges

Security is an evolving concept and presents many challenges to the EU-25 that impact on a wide range of existing and emerging EU policies3, citizens? concerns, including the protection against terrorist threats, and the adaptation of governance structures to effectively deal with these matters.

Objectives

The European security strategy, ?A Secure Europe in a Better World? proposes three strategic objectives for the Union:

  • Addressing threats
  • Building security in our neighbourhood
  • An international order based on effective multilateralism

The need for Community Security Research

Europe needs to tackle threats that are more diverse, less visible, and less predictable. This calls for behavioural changes as well as more innovative means to deal with complex situations to address security in a comprehensive manner (?comprehensive security?).

Europe must use its technological strengths to build the capability for deploying significant resources for peacekeeping, humanitarian aid and state-building activities, either on its own or in international alliances5. It requires an optimal use of the resources and the development of European industrial capabilities.

The Preparatory Action

The Preparatory Action is designed to assess the need for a further initiative that will complement and liaise with existing and future intergovernmental schemes; be open to all EU members and operate on the basis of Community principles; and contribute to bridging the current gap between generic civil research (as supported by EC Framework programmes) and national and intergovernmental programmes oriented to defence procurement needs.

Budget

15 Mio? for 2004 to launch a Preparatory Action entitled ?Enhancement of the European industrial potential in the field of Security research 2004-2006?, with a view to contributing to the improvement of European citizens? security and in accordance with Article 157. It is planned that the Preparatory Action will last three years with a estimated total budget of 65 Mio? (subject to the decision of the Budgetary Authority).

Fields of Activity

  • Improving situation awareness
  • Optimising security and protection of networked systems
  • Protecting against terrorism (including bio-terrorism and incidents with biological, chemical and other substances)
  • Enhancing crisis management (including evacuation, search and rescue operations, active agents control and remediation)
  • Achieving interoperability and integrated systems for information and communication

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