On June 30-July 1, 2022, CounteR Project representatives from EI and AST took part in the annual Projects to Policy Seminar, co-organised by the European Research Executive Agency (REA) and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs (DG HOME). REA is the funding body that manages the EU Commission’s programmes on science and innovation.
Staff members of AST as the CounteR Project coordinator and of EI as the leader of WP9 – Dissemination and Communication – attended the seminar, which took place in Brussels.
Every year, DG HOME and REA co-organise the Projects to Policy Seminar, to which all the newly launched projects are invited. The aim is to raise awareness among the relevant policy DGs on the new projects that have been launched, as well as to provide guidance to these new projects regarding the policy-related outputs the policy DGs are interested in.
The event was structured into thematic breakout sessions and participants discussed in groups topics such as: fighting crime and terrorism, including Artificial Intelligence; infrastructure; disaster-resilient societies; border and external security; and digital security. On the second day, a plenary session featured presentations of general interest, addressing communication in security research, exploitation and dissemination issues.
The CounteR consortium representatives attending the seminar established relationships with #h2020 projects similar to CounteR in the domains of fighting crime and terrorism, and digital security. “We established new fruitful connections. More specifically, the MED1stMR project and the pop AI project published information about CounteR on their websites’ sections, dedicated to similar projects,” EI’s Apostol Apostolov said. “The event’s main goal was to build awareness of the Commission’s policy units of the potential evidence-based inputs from projects useful for further shaping the EU regulations. We briefed the participants about CounteR’s technical and practical objectives, and its exploitation strategy,” AST’s Adrian Onu commented.
The seminar also offered an opportunity for the participants to learn about the new repositories, tools, and training services, offered by EUROPOL and CEPOL. One of the ideas discussed with participants was about joining the European Cluster for Securing Critical Infrastructures, which brings together LEAs, researchers, and other types of stakeholders.
The key takeaway from the Projects to Policy Seminar was that EU policymakers would like to learn from the innovations, results, and challenges faced by ongoing #h2020 projects, so that they can potentially integrate these insights into future policies. At the same time, project coordinators were briefed about the expected content of the policy deliverable, due at the end of each project.
Further details and useful links can be found in AST’s readout of the seminar, published on AST’s website.