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An in-depth look at Europe's civil security systems

Responding to crises and emergencies in the EU is crucial for the well-being of citizens. A study of civil security systems will reveal their strengths and weaknesses, helping policymakers to improve crisis management.
An in-depth look at Europe's civil security systems
Police, fire and rescue services represent key civil security systems that are crucial for preventing and responding to crises and disasters. As these systems operate differently across Europe, the EU is keen on analysing them and assessing their effectiveness.

The EU-funded project 'Analysis of civil security systems in Europe' (ANVIL) is examining how these systems work in different countries and regions to identify what works and what doesn't. It is focusing on preparedness and response measures related to crises such as industrial disasters, natural disasters, infectious diseases, transport accidents, critical infrastructure failure and terrorist attacks.

To achieve its aims, the project team is investigating key indicators and features of civil security systems from different angles. It is closely studying the cultural and historical aspects of these systems, as well as legal and constitutional aspects. Relations between the civil security system and citizens are also being considered, as is the role of the private sector in maintaining civil security.

Within the project, key indicators are revealing the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy of systems based on recent crises in different countries being studied. The team is also conducting interviews with experts in civil security, crisis management and public administration, looking as well at existing evaluation mechanisms.

Many contacts with experts, policymakers and academics have already taken place to create a methodology for evaluating civil security systems in Europe. The project team has made palpable progress in gathering data by country and has developed an assessment protocol to cross-compare systems.

Once the ANVIL mapping methodology and definitions of effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy are complete, EU nations will be in a better position to assess and improve their civil security systems. The project is working on specific recommendations for policymakers on what works and what doesn't, helping governments to upgrade security in a number of areas. Keeping in mind that no single security solution can be implemented in all EU countries, ANVIL will be instrumental in designing a better security solution to the benefit of the bloc and its citizens. Watch the project’s video here.

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