doi:10.3849/1802-7199

Conference Smart Security

MATTER AND OBJECTIVE

In times of economic downturn and consequent cuts in defence spending, when new security challenges emerge and the world is changing rapidly, efficiency becomes the necessity. The aim of the conference is to identify the practical measures that would allow CE militaries to mitigate the impact of budget cuts, and to preserve and improve capabilities during the period of austerity.
 
DETAILED DESCRIPTION
 
The cuts in defence budgets coupled with the rising cost of defence equipment has brought particular pain for smaller NATO states. Their ability to modernise, always somewhat inferior to that of the larger states, is being eroded, with negative consequences for their security and for solidarity among NATO allies. Smaller states, therefore, have to pave the way for greater efficiencies in military spending through sharing and defence integration within regional groupings. Both NATO and the EU have adopted regional military co-operation as a response to defence austerity, building on examples such as Nordic co-operation or the Franco-British defence co-operation treaty.

Previous attempts to establish closer defence cooperation among the Visegrad 4 countries never yielded serious and sustainable projects. There are few informal contacts among the security communities, no regional security identity, and very little research that could remedy the situation. However, now that defence austerity has turned cooperation into a necessity, there is renewed interest in Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia in co-operation. Two of the Visegrad 4 countries, Slovakia and the Czech Republic are completing or have recently completed defence reviews, which concluded with strong calls for more cross-border collaboration. The conference will build on this newfound interest and propose tangible cooperation projects for near-term implementation. Its overall goal is to preserve and improve the region’s capacity to contribute to NATO missions, thus strengthening the security of Central Europe and solidarity in NATO.
 
TARGET GROUPS
 
The primary target group includes Slovak, Czech, Hungarian and Polish security officials and analysts, who will be given the opportunity to discuss specific projects with distinguished experts from the V4 countries. Apart from these target groups, the project also aspires to address academic community, university and post-graduate students; media and NGOs, whose support will be essential in building political backing for proposed collaborative projects. By creating a platform for international discussion, the conference will contribute to confidence-building among the security communities in the Visegrad countries, allow them to share their knowledge and indirectly support the regional oriented approach in dealing with the national security issues.

For detailed information in English see the conference website on: http://ata-sac.org/section-326-SMART-SECURITY.

Created 20.11.2011 19:07:33 | read 4628x | Frank