The European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid ThreatsHybrid CoE is an international hub for practitioners and experts. We aim to assist participating states and institutions in understanding and defending against hybrid threats.
The initiative to establish Hybrid CoE originated from the Joint Communication by the European Commission and the High Representative to the European Parliament and the Council “Joint framework on countering hybrid threats – a European Union response”, decided in Brussels on 6 April 2016.
The initiative was supported in the Common set of proposals for the implementation of the Joint EU/NATO Declaration, endorsed by the Council of the European Union and the North Atlantic Council on 6 December 2016.
The Hybrid CoE was established on 11th April 2017, inaugurated on 2nd October, 2017.
BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO HYBRID THREATS
The term hybrid threat refers to an action conducted by state or non-state actors, whose goal is to undermine or harm the target by influencing its decision-making at the local, regional, state or institutional level.
Such actions are coordinated and synchronized and deliberately target democratic states’ and institutions’ vulnerabilities.
Activities can take place, for example, in the political, economic, military, civil or information domains. They are conducted using a wide range of means and designed to remain below the threshold of detection and attribution.
FUNCTIONS OF HYBRID COE
To be a platform for nations to come together to share best practices, build capability, test new ideas and exercise defence against hybrid threats.
To be a neutral facilitator between the EU and NATO through strategic discussions and exercises.
To lead the conversation on countering hybrid through research and sharing of best practices.
COMMUNITIES OF INTEREST (COIs)
COIs are networks of practitioners from participating states and the two institutions.
To work with participating states, NATO and the EU to understand different dimensions of hostile state influence and enhance our ability (and the tools at our disposal) to respond, deter and where appropriate confront, individually and collectively the challenge of hostile state influence activities.
VULNERABILITIES AND RESILIENCE
To help states and institutions recognise their vulnerabilities (both country specific and in aggregate), survey risks, understand how to identify attacks against them and build their capabilities to increase resilience both within and between states and institutions.
STRATEGY AND DEFENCE
To contribute to the education of common and comprehensive judgment of participating states, EU, NATO regarding hybrid warfare, related strategies and resulting implications for security policy, military and defense, hereby combining empirical evidence with the theory of war and strategy.
To support COI’s work by providing analyses and improving understanding of adversaries’ intentions and capabilities and what may influence and deter them. Providing academic support in developing resilience methodology.
TRAINING AND EXERCISING
To enable the COIs to deliver against their objectives, as well as developing and testing training and education modules on countering hybrid threats and on implementing comprehensive approach. Scenario development is a core function and supporting EU/NATO discussions and exercises.
Currently, the Participants are Austria, Canada, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, the UK and the USA. Participation in the Centre is open to EU Member States and NATO Allies. The EU and NATO are actively participating in activities of the Centre.