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Thursday 01 April 2010
22 March – Evening Debate
Cyber Security: A Transatlantic Perspective

On both sides of the Atlantic, policymakers are increasingly concerned that cyber-attacks represent a serious threat. However, the SDA evening debate showed a clear division of opinions amongst senior officials, with a lack of consensus on the real threat posed by ‘weapons of mass disruption’. Top NATO official Jamie Shea said that the Alliance suffers around 100 cyber incidents everyday, telling some 200 NATO and the EU officials, politicians, national diplomats, security experts and journalists that although the attacks were not comparable to nuclear warfare and weapons of mass destruction, they nevertheless represented an alarming rise in the use of ‘weapons of mass disruption’. Stewart Baker, former assistant secretary at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, underlined the lack of continuity in the approaches of the different EU member states, quoting from a survey he recently co-authored.

 Full press release here.


12 May – Roundtable

Does Europe need
 “Homeland Security”?


Recent events have shown just how current the threat of terrorism is to both the US and Europe. What concrete achievements can EU governments and institutions point to? Has greater coherence of national security policies in the EU been achieved? How has the Lisbon treaty and affected this area, and should there be plans for European Homeland Security Agency? Has the protection of critical infrastructures been high enough on the European agenda? What role for NATO in CIP? Are public-private partnerships a viable option, and, in sectors as diverse as telecommunications, water, energy, transport and power, what terrorist attacks scenarios are currently being studied?

2 March – International Conference

Conflict Prevention and Resolution:
the Role of Cultural Relations


On March 2nd, NATO the Security & Defence Agenda and the British Council welcomed over 250 participants to the international conference “Conflict Prevention and Resolution: the Role of Cultural Relations”. This event brought together speakers from NATO, the EU, the British Council, and a variety of cultural organisations to discuss the pertinence of cultural awareness in conflict resolution.

Case studies from Afghanistan, Africa and the Balkans were brought before the Brussels strategic community, ranging from sport and photography to literature and the preservation of cultural heritage and traditions. Panellists discussed the perspective of integrating culture in NATO’s new Strategic Concept, as well as the need for better cultural training, new ways of dealing with local populations, and determining clear goals in how to integrate the cultural element in interventions in conflict zones.

Where we are

The Security & Defence Agenda (SDA) is based in the Bibliothèque Solvay in the Parc Léopold next to the European Parliament.

The building houses the SDA team and serves as the venue for almost all SDA events in Brussels.

SDA Partners

Friends of Europe

SDA’s sister think-tank, Friends of Europe, is a prominent and lively Brussels-based think-tank for EU policy analysis and debate. 

Europe’s World Articles
In the headlines
SDA Speakers

Madeleine Albright
Former US
Secretary of State


Margot Wallström
Former Vice President of the European Commission


Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega
Spanish First Vice President of the Government


Lt. Gen. David Leakey Director General of the EU Military Staff


Jamie Shea
Director for Policy Planning, Private Office of the Secretary General of NATO


Recep Tayyip Erdogan 
Prime Minister of Turkey


Former European Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy


Zhe Song
Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China to the EU


Antonios Chatzidakis
General Manager, NAMSA, NATO


Admiral James Stavridis
Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR)


Ana Maria Gomes
MEP and Vice Chairwoman, Committee on Security & Defence, European Parliament


General Stéphane Abrial
NATO Supreme Allied Commander Transformation
(Jam Participant)


Carl Bildt
Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs
(Jam Participant)


Marc Perrin de Brichambaut
Secretary General, OSCE
(Jam Participants)


Anne-Marie Slaughter
Director of Policy Planning, United States Department of State
(Jam Participants)


Geoffrey Van Orden
MEP, SubCommittee on Security and Defence, European Parliament


Kai Eide
UN Special Representative to Afghanistan, UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan
(Jam Participant)


Vladimir Chizhov
Ambassador, Mission of the Russian Federation to the EU


Gen. Håkan Syrén
Chairman of European Military Committee (EUMC)
(Jam Participant)


François Gayet
Secretary General of the Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD)


Dmitry Rogozin
Ambassador, Mission of the Russian Federation to NATO


Alyson Bailes
Visiting Professor, University of Iceland


Peter Weilemann
European Office Director, Konrad Adenauer Stiftung


Stefanie Babst
Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, NATO


Jean-François Bureau
Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, NATO


Lt. Gen. Karl Eikenberry
Deputy Chairman of the NATO Military Committee


Admiral Giampaolo di Paola
Chairman of the Military Committee, NATO


Commander Snowy Lintern
Liaison Officer of the EU Naval Force in Somalia


Shirin Ebadi
2003 Nobel Peace Prize Winner


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