Europe needs an effective European Security Policy to contribute to the implementation of EU external policies, the creation of an EU-wide area of justice, freedom and security; and to support policy areas such as transport, health, civil protection, energy and environment.
The Security research theme, as part of the FP7 cooperation programme, has an exclusively civil application focus, and follows the respect of privacy and civil liberties as a guiding principle.
Policy making remains a European Commission prerogative. In the field of security research, the Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry (DG ENTR) defines objectives, strategies and priority areas of action.
The objectives of the European security research are:
- to develop the technologies and knowledge needed to ensure the security of citizens from threats such as terrorism, natural disasters and crime, while respecting fundamental human rights including privacy
- to ensure optimal and concerted use of available and evolving technologies to the benefit of civil European security
- to stimulate the cooperation of providers and users for civil security solutions, improving the competitiveness of the European security industry and delivering mission-oriented research results to reduce security gaps
Emphasis is given to seven domains of activity:
security of citizens – technology solutions for civil protection, bio-security, protection against crime and terrorism
security of infrastructures and utilities - examining and securing infrastructures in areas such as ICT, transport, energy and services in the financial and administrative domain
intelligent surveillance and border security - technologies and methods for protecting Europe's border controls
restoring security and safety in case of crisis - technologies and communication, coordination in support of civil, humanitarian and rescue tasks
security systems integration, interconnectivity and interoperability - information gathering for civil security, protection of confidentiality and traceability of transactions
security and society - socio-economic, political and cultural aspects of security, ethics and values, social environment and perceptions of security
security research coordination and structuring - coordination between European and international security research efforts in the areas of civil, security and defence research
The Research Executive Agency manages security research projects to a value of nearly €800 million.