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Security and defence

The Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) is an integral part of EU foreign policy. Through its military operations and civilian missions, the EU has contributed to regional and global stability. Since it's inception, the CSDP has responded to a shifting regional security context. It has played a vital role in crisis management in the EU's near and wider neighbourhood but it is also an essential part of the EU's broader approach to the protection of Europe and capacity building.

Although the Lisbon Treaty consolidated the EU's crisis management apparatus, the EU Global Strategy has set a new level of ambition for EU defence. In addition to the CSDP playing an operational role in the EU's integrated approach to crises, the EU Global Strategy has stressed the need for the EU to become a more capable and effective defence actor. Initiatives such as the European Defence Fund, the coordinated annual defence review (CARD) and more coherent financing for EU operations and capacity building efforts are all aimed at supporting the EU's strategic autonomy and the European Defence Technological and Industrial Base. The EUISS continues to support the development of CSDP through outreach activities and expert publications.

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    27 November 2015

    How successful has the EU been in implementing gender mainstreaming and achieving gender balance in its CSDP missions and operations?

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    20 November 2015

    A week after the shocking events in Paris, the EUISS Director looks at France’s decision to seek the solidarity of its EU partners. Could member states now make use of instruments they created some time ago and have rarely thought about since?

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    13 November 2015

    In response to concerns of losing technological superiority, the US is implementing the Defense Innovation Initiative. This intends to ensure that the Pentagon leverages breakthrough technologies from the traditional defence industrial base and commercial-technology sector alike. Also, what role can Europe play in the US third offset strategy?

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    28 October 2015

    This Brief examines the rise of hybrid threats, focusing in particular on Russia’s ongoing info-war against the West. Could the ‘psychological defences’ developed by several countries in Western Europe during the Cold War to counter Soviet propaganda now inspire the EU?

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    28 October 2015

    The first in a mini-series of short publications on hybrid warfare, this Brief takes a closer look at what the widely-used term actually means. Now that the European Union considers itself a potential target of hybrid threats, what can it do to prepare an effective strategy to counter them?

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    28 October 2015

    The last in a mini-series of EUISS publications on hybrid warfare, the Alert assesses the tactics employed by terrorist groups in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) such as ISIL. How do they differ from those of state actors in other parts of the world?

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    28 October 2015

    This Alert shows how disquiet in the West about Russia's use of hybrid tactics has elevated concern about the phenomenon to the strategic level, in particular due to fears that hybrid operations may undermine the credibility of deterrence.

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    30 September 2015

    As the EU anti-migrant smuggling operation in the Mediterranean sea – known as ‘EUNAVFOR Med’ or ‘Operation Sophia’ – enters its operational phase, this Brief examines the background to the mission and shows how this operation confirms the maritime dimension of CSDP in the management of new types of security threats.

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    24 July 2015

    This Brief seeks to improve the understanding of the relation between (cripplingly) expensive capabilities and complex security challenges. What are the true effects of cost escalation of weapon systems? And is European defence suffering as a result?

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    09 July 2015

    Since Modi took office last year, India has embarked on a number of measures to encourage the development of the country’s economy and the streamlining of its indigenous defence capabilities. Is there a role for the EU in this process?

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  • 13 March 2013

    Taking place in Washington, D.C on the 13-14 March, the 2013 EUWF served as a reminder that diplomacy, development and defence are all important elements in attempts to maintain stability and generate growth, even in times of budgetary constraints.

  • 08 June 2012

    This seminar, jointly organised by the EU Police Mission (EUPM) and the EUISS and held in Sarajevo on the 7-8 June, marked 10 years of EU civilian crisis management in the Western Balkans and examined the impact of the EUPM in Bosnia and Herzegovina and lessons learned for the future of CFSP/CSDP.

  • 18 March 2012

    In March 2012 the EUISS and the EU Delegation to the United States organised a briefing session for a group of aspiring American journalists in Brussels. Following this event, the EUISS, in partnership with the Medill School at the Northwestern University in Chicago, published the best work of selected students here online.

  • 16 September 2011

    What strategic direction should Euro-Atlantic security cooperation take? And what are the major challenges that need to be addressed? This roundtable, taking place in Brussels on 16 September 2011, reflected upon these crucial issues faced on both sides of the Atlantic.

  • 13 July 2010

    This first seminar in the 'Unfinished business in Europe' series focused on the Western Balkans and Turkey with a particular emphasis on securing and stablising Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo and Macedonia.

  • 18 June 2010

    Organised with the support of the Instituto Español de Estudos Estratégicos (Spanish Ministry of Defence), Middle East Technical University (METU, Ankara) and the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this seminar explored Turkey's role in CSDP operations and ways ahead for future cooperation.

  • 03 May 2010

    This brainstorming meeting explored European perspectives on NATO's new strategic concept. Taking place in Paris on 3 May 2010, the two sessions focused on what Europe should think about NATO's new strategic concept and what the future holds for EU-NATO cooperation.

  • 26 April 2010

    In preparation for the 2010 Annual Conference 2010, this seminar focused on how to support peacebuilding in the field. Developing mediation capacities at the local level in conflict-prone and fragile countries was seen as paramount in the peacebuilding sector.

  • 18 March 2010

    The EUFOR Tchad/RCA lessons learned seminar hosted by the Institute on 18 March facilitated a debate on the effectiveness of the EU mission in Chad. The discussions resulted in a number of recommendations for the planning, conduct and execution of subsequent EU operations and generated several ideas for the future of the CSDP.

  • 11 December 2009

    The EUISS co-hosted the second Seminar on Turkey and the ESDP at Bosphorus University in Istanbul on 11 December 2009. The debate centred on the assumption that an open CSDP is not only a viable idea, but could also constitute a suitable framework for enhanced security cooperation with third countries in a multipolar world.

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