Center for Security Studies

Athens, Greece

Center for Security Studies

Athens, Greece

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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.4.1-4 | Award Amount: 4.28M | Year: 2014

There exists a huge variety in the occurrence and characteristics of major incidents. Incident management stakeholders and in particular emergency health service providers have to deal with two basic challenges: The disproportion between the needs and the available human/material resources in the response capacity and the inherent time constraints of an emergency. These critical factors play a seminal role in the decision-making process during a crisis event, which affects all levels of command & control (strategic, operational, tactical). The drawback with current health emergency management systems lies with the command & control operations that should coordinate the actions of the separate services and turn them into an effective, multi-faceted crisis response mechanism. IMPRESS will improve the efficiency of decision making in emergency health operations, which will have a direct impact on the quality of services provided to citizens. It will provide a consolidated concept of operations, to effectively manage medical resources, prepare and coordinate response activities, supported by a Decision Support System, using data from multiple heterogeneous sources. The proposed solution will facilitate communication between Health Services (and Emergency Responders) at all levels of response and the crisis cycle with the necessary health care systems support, supervision and management of participating organizations. It will assist health services in becoming more proactive, better prepared and interoperable with other emergency response organizations. Thus, medical emergency teams will be turned, using IMPRESS, into one coherent force. IMPRESS will catalyze a dramatic and durable impact in the way in which Health Services are provided in crisis situations, and will help improve the integration of health care actors and volunteers with other Crisis Management stakeholders, providing also an overall competitive advantage of CM-related SMEs and large businesses in Europe


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: SEC-2013.2.4-1 | Award Amount: 48.35M | Year: 2014

CORE will consolidate, amplify, extend and demonstrate EU knowledge and capabilities and international co-operation for securing supply chains whilst maintaining or improving business performance, with specific reference to key Supply Chain Corridors. CORE will be driven by the requirements of: the Customs, law enforcement authorities, and other agencies nationally and internationally to increase effectiveness of security & trade compliance, without increasing the transaction costs for business and to increase co-operative security risk management (supervision & control); the business communities, specifically shippers, forwarders, terminal operators, carriers and financial stakeholders to integrate compliance and trade facilitation concepts like green lanes and pre-clearance with supply chain visibility and optimisation. CORE will consolidate solutions developed in Reference Projects in each supply chain sector (port, container, air, post). Implementation-driven R&D will be then undertaken designed to discover gaps and practical problems and to develop capabilities and solutions that could deliver sizable and sustainable progress in supply chain security across all EU Member States and on a global scale.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.7.2-1 | Award Amount: 1.89M | Year: 2014

Petty crimes pose a more significant threat to daily life of local communities. Crime increases due to socioeconomic criteria (wealth level of local community, unemployment rate, etc.) and its impact is becoming more critical due to recent economic crisis. This high rate of criminality infects the social and commercial environment which makes citizens and business reluctant to elaboration and welfare. Moreover, it should be kept in mind that reckless confrontation to petty crimes by police or security enterprises can cause unreasonable loss of lives. FP7-SEC-2013 has identified this need and requires low cost technology based solutions that reduce criminal activity and at the same time meet the needs and financial expectations of the communities, citizens and businesses. In response to the above issue P-REACT proposes to research and develop a sensor data (video and motion) capturing and archiving network/platform that allows the protection of small businesses from petty crimes. It is based on low cost components and built in capabilities (sensors and embedded systems) interconnecting using established and emerging technologies, such as Digital Subscriber Lines and Cloud computing. The basic idea is to install low-cost cameras and smart sensors in the small business premises, that are networked directly to, one or more, Cloud-based, Data Centers, where their activity is continuously monitored and recorded. A potential incident detected by sensors installed in a specific store may also trigger neighbour sensors installed in other premises near the incident in order to provide the best coverage possible in terms of data gathering. Moreover, the platform will be able to receive information (images, video) captured by mobile smart devices (phones, tablets etc.) operated by users that were found ad-hoc at a place of an incident.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2012.3.4-4 | Award Amount: 2.61M | Year: 2014

Integration of a handheld artificial sniffer system for customs/police inspection purposes e.g. the control of freight containers. The artificial system should be able to seek first hidden persons and second also controlled goods, illicit drugs and safety and security hazards. The instrument consists of a gas- and vapour sampling pump unit, an enrichment unit, a desorption unit, a detection unit (sensor array) and an alarm indicator unit. The air sampling modus needs a high air flow in order to sample and enrich a lot of target gases and the detection modus needs a low air flow modus for transporting the targets after the desorption process as low diluted as possible to the detector. The target gases cover human perspirations like carbonic acids, aldehydes, thiolic compounds and nitrogen compounds and the human breathing product CO2. Different kinds of sensors will be used so that each target can be detected as selective as possible. For providing an estimation of the probability of the presence of humans inside the inspected area pattern recognition will be used. The sniffer instrument will be benchmarked towards dogs and towards ion mobility spectrometry.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.2.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.15M | Year: 2014

The concentration of government buildings within urban environments has become a source of serious security vulnerability. Administrators and security experts face a variety of evolving threats that are hard to anticipate. To secure a government building against multiple threats while maintaining a minimal level of transparency and accessibility requires an integral security approach. It demands interdisciplinary collaboration between different experts from different domains. Currently, there is no efficient method or tool that allows the experts of different stripes to efficiently design, evaluate and implement appropriate security concepts. Existing ones do not allow for the effective creation, analysis, assessment, and sharing of security concepts that will help government administrators provide a secure environment for personnel and citizens. The VASCO project addresses two important objectives. First, it will design, implement and evaluate an innovative IT tool that will enable security professionals and administrators to jointly formulate, test, and adjust security concepts and measures in a virtual environment. This provides a cost-effective and risk-free environment in which to devise an evidence-based, all-risk approach for the protection of government buildings. Second, it will produce a knowledge and best practice database, which captures dynamic and visual reference scenarios created with the VASCO system. To accomplish these aims, the project will adopt an iterative methodology that enables the constant involvement of its world-class security and crisis management experts, assisted by a solid and open user group, during the whole project. It makes use of the latest advances in interactive visualisation, simulation, crisis management, and artificial intelligence to provide end-users with a new tool that significantly improves the way in which they collaborate to secure critical government assets both at home and abroad.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2012.2.3-1 | Award Amount: 4.73M | Year: 2014

Socioeconomic activities such as supply and distribution of gas or electricity and the Infrastructures that generate it or transport it (power plants, gas pipes), are vital to the day-to-day functioning of any country. Due to several factors, the social and financial European situation, or supply constraints, energy & utilities have become, over the last years, a prominent issue in Europe. In this light, any serious disruption on these Critical Infrastructures (producers or transporters) could have an enormous impact on the well-being of any society. How those Critical Infrastructures can anticipate any threat with the view of avoiding potential disruptions is the main goal of ARGOS project. This project proposal will enhance the capacity of those Infrastructures in order to monitor, deter, and respond to a potential threat using Early Warning Technologies. Commonly, enhancing security capabilities entails the inherent implication of ethical aspects. In this sense, the EC is highly sensitive with this matter and its making relevant efforts to regulate this situation. As a starting point of the project idea and with the aim of being in tune with EC efforts, ARGOS has focus on the development of non-privacy invasive technologies such as vibration sensors. Regarding technologies that might be considered as non full privacy respectful such as audio sensors, this will not be developed with the aim of recording conversations (but for distinguish among animals, humans or machines); and others such as video sensors, will contemplate embedded video analytics for 1st level processing (together with a 2nd level of powerful video analytics placed in the local gateway) so they will transfer only metadata instead of images.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.5.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.28M | Year: 2014

SecInCoRe will design a Secure Dynamic Cloud based concept for Information, Communication and Resource Interoperability including information exchange and access to a common information space. This will be based on a pan-European disaster inventory focusing on specific artefacts of response to regional, national as well as cross European emergencies and disasters. SecInCoRe develops models for sustainable access to the information gathered throughout the project dependent on the type of stakeholder from open access to commercial service provision; the technical system concept will be assessed by first responders and police authorities, belonging to one or more European Member States, for collaborative management of emergencies and disasters. Knowledge and concepts are transferred to a fully functional cloud system which will be conceived to be lively used by emergency first responders and police authorities. The variety of different emergency IT-systems presents a new set of challenges to end-users involved in the effective management of emergencies and actions of law enforcement. To meet these challenges SecInCoRe will implement and integrate an end-user driven pan-European inventory of past critical events. To learn out of the events a secure, dynamic cloud based knowledge base and communication system concept will be implemented. This approach will be enhanced by a conceptual integration of available technology into a network enabled communication system for first responder organisations. Thus the main project benefit will be to enable collaboration and exploitation of emergency information at the EU level. Using this system concept, improved emergency operation management will be performed at cross-border and national incident scenes. Furthermore it offers a usable playing field for European industry. Within the scope of crisis management, the project will provide official public users with means to specify their needs and to assess the tcloud emergency system


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-CSA | Phase: SEC-2013.3.2-1 | Award Amount: 13.96M | Year: 2014

This project proposal EARLY WARNING FOR INCREASED SITUATIONAL AWARENESS (EWISA) is addressing the FP7 Theme for Security Research the work programme topic SEC-2013.3.2-1 Pre-Operational Validation (POV) on land borders, the topic Area 10.3.2 Land borders as is aimed to promote further cooperation between public authorities as the end-users on developing new solutions to improve the quality and efficiency of public services related to security issues on topics of common European interest. The proposal is in the area of Activity 10.3, regarding the Intelligent Surveillance and Border Security with the specific funding scheme Pre-Operational Validation (POV), a Combination of Collaborative Project and Coordination (CP-CSA) and Support Action. The project implements the actual strategic approach of Frontex, expressed in EuroSur , through which an intelligence picture of possible threats against MS is obtained, picture created outside the MS and Schengen area, through the combination of radar pictures with video pictures and with the intelligence collected from the sensor stations together with the ones from the MS partners, from checked sources. The threats which are subject to analysis in this project are the following: a) illegal migration, b) smuggling, c) trafficking in drugs and forbidden materials, d) trafficking in weapons The project will provide not only the assessment of a stand-alone technology, but also assessment of the integration into current surveillance infrastructure of the new capabilities provided by the industry. The objective is to increase intelligence in video surveillance. The approach is a process like entity, which consists of: camera-specific processes a modular implementation of successive analysis layers, which is applied for optimal situational awareness: chaining, motion, figure, face. In addition to the cameras processing capabilities, the network consists of: sensors, network analysis and system for control room.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.7.6-1 | Award Amount: 1.98M | Year: 2014

21st Century security challenges raise questions about the effectiveness of the traditional intelligence learning paradigm suggesting the need of a complex, agile and rapidly changing intelligence analysis approach. In this context, via a holistic learning methodology and a serious games solution, the LEILA project will enable to empower intelligence analysts by improving their cognitive capabilities, reasoning skills and creative approach, at individual and group level. The radical innovation of this holistic approach is brought by the combination of several fields which are normally explored and applied separately such as: psycho-sociological and cognitive factors in decision making (e.g. decision biases, critical thinking, multiple reasoning strategies, creativity), decision making strategies under uncertainty (e.g. Bayesian approaches, game theory), and group interaction dynamics in intelligence analysis. A variety of learning experiences (e.g. games of deterrence, intelligence analysis under stress, emergence in highly of collaborative situations) will be elaborated and computerized in different serious games, that will offer the possibility to actively acquire the new IA skills from the different angles. The impact on users community will be ensured by partners providing knowledge and learning in the specific domain (NDU, KEMEA, ZANASI), by the early and continuous involvement of end users and stakeholders (partners and their networks), by the iterative design process - alternating pilots and implementation of the learning framework and the serious games - and the intensive dissemination activities. The involvement in the consortium of experienced SMEs in the domains of Serious Games, innovative interfaces, technology enhanced learning, together with important key players and knowledge providers in Intelligence Analysis and in training for law enforcement, will ensure to LEILA the achievement of the defined scientific and technical outcomes.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: SEC-2012.3.5-1 | Award Amount: 14.44M | Year: 2014

The SUNNY project aims to contribute to EUROSUR by defining a new tool for collecting real-time information in operational scenarios. SUNNY represents a step beyond existing research projects due to the following main features: A two-tier intelligent heterogeneous UAV sensor network will be considered in order to provide both large field and focused surveillance capabilities, where the first-tier sensors, carried by medium altitude, long-endurance autonomous UAVs, are used to patrol large border areas to detect suspicious targets and provide global situation awareness. Fed with the information collected by the first-tier sensors, the second-tier sensors will be deployed to provide more focused surveillance capability by tracking the targets and collecting further evidence for more accurate target recognition and threat evaluation. Novel algorithms will be developed to analyse the data collected by the sensors for robust and accurate target identification and event detection; Novel sensors and on-board processing generation, integrated on UAV system, will be focus on low weight, low cost, high resolution that can operate under variable conditions such as darkness, snow, and rain. In particular, SUNNY will develop sensors that generate both RGB image, Near Infrared (NIR) image and hyperspectral image and that use radar information to detect, discriminate and track objects of interest inside complex environment with focus on the sea borders. Alloying to couple sensor processing and preliminary detection results (on-board) with local UAV control, leading to innovative active sensing techniques, replacing low level sensor data communication by a higher abstraction level of information communication. The exploitation and adaptation of emerging standard wireless technologies and architectures as IEEE 802.11a/g/n, IEEE 802.11p, DVB-T2, Mobile WiMAX, LTE, and Wi-Fi@700MHz will be considered due to their low cost and advantageous features.

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