Since the events of 9/11/2001, security concerns have become of notably greater importance in policy agendas. In December 2003, the European Union (EU) defined its first security strategy (A Secure Europe in a Better World adopted by EU heads of State and Governments). This marked an important step towards a convergence of views on security within the EU and also provided the basis for the development of a new European security culture. In 2004, the European Commission launched a Preparatory Action in the field of security research entitled ‘Enhancement of the European industrial potential in the field of security research’ with a view to improving the security of European citizens, reinforcing European technological and industrial potential in security-related areas, and establishing a comprehensive European Security Research Programme from 2007 onwards.
Effective security policies depend critically on assessing what scientific and technological knowledge is available, what knowledge is needed and how that knowledge can be put into effective use. The challenge is to understand how science and technology can contribute towards tackling threats and security challenges.
This paper provides an overview of the recent developments in the EU's approach to security research.
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