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Pre-normative research and demonstration for disaster-resilient societies


Proposals are invited to address issues related to pre-standardisation, in particular:

  • Sub-topic 1: [2018] Pre-standardisation for the security of water supply

For several years research actions have led to the development of detection technologies to analyse drinking water. Based on the legacy of FP7-funded actions, clearer strategies to integrate current technologies in the existing water safety network should be designed. Testing facilities should interconnect the safety- and security-related networks of sensors that are deployed among water supply and distribution networks. The focus of action should be on networking testing facilities developed by water utilities to demonstrate the use of current sensor technologies for the purpose of both safety and security of water, including methods to monitor reservoirs, and sea or river levels for early warning.

  • Sub-topic 2: [2019] Pre-standardisation in crisis management (including natural hazard and CBRN-E emergencies)

Generally speaking, the development of standards for civil protection in the areas of crisis management (including for systems, tools and services related to natural hazard and CBRN-E emergencies) will increase interoperability of equipment and procedures. Innovation actions should bring validated and positively-assessed practices into standards within or outside current standardisation processes. The involvement of well-established standardisation organisations is required. The complementarity of the proposed activities with activities supported by the European Defence Agency (EDA) in the CBRN-E area should be described comprehensively.

  • Sub-topic 3: [2020] First aids vehicles deployment, training, maintenance, logistic and remote centralized coordination means

Improved standards and common communication data exchange mechanisms are required for an effective deployment of resources during the run-up to a major crisis related to any kind of disaster either natural (including resulting from climate-related extremes) or man-made, and immediately after the event, for example in case of a mass evacuation from an urban area. Proposals should target in particular events where there are strong cross-sector, cross-border, cross-hierarchy coordination activities ongoing, and therefore the issue of interoperability. The aim is to pave the way to improved standards, including voluntary Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and/or ISO or EN standards.

The centre of gravity for technology development with actions funded under this topic is expected to be up to TRL 6 to 7 – see General Annex G of the Horizon 2020 Work Programme.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of about EUR 6 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

A reason for the difficult interaction among practitioners, and for the low levels of interoperability of equipment and procedures implemented by first responders, lies in there being insufficient harmonisation and standardisation, which pre-normative research and demonstrations may address effectively.

The security market in Europe is an institutional market that is highly fragmented (because of the lack of standardization and harmonised certification), and with a strong societal dimension (it directly affects in many ways the citizens). In this context, the Mandate M/487 to Establish Security Standards coordinated by the European Committee for Standardization has clearly recognized the whole field of ""crisis management and civil protection"" as one of the three priorities for establishing standards in the security sector. It has identified the need for crisis management and civil protection standardization activities to facilitate response, effectiveness, efficiency and cooperation as top priorities, especially in what regards to natural hazard emergencies.

Medium term:

  • [2018] full awareness of water supply facilities about the necessity of designing monitoring networks capable of detecting both contamination risks (safety) and deliberate poisoning (security);
  • [2019] standards for interoperable equipment and procedures in the area of crisis management and civil protection (including natural hazard and CBRN-E emergencies in support to operations involving international crews;
  • [2020] standards for an effective deployment of resources to respond to major crisis.