Tuesday 19 April 2022

PROACTIVE EU project holds its 11th consortium meeting and a joint workshop with practitioners and representatives of the civil society

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The EU-funded H2020 project PROACTIVE, led by the UIC Security Division, held its 11th consortium meeting on 5 and 6 April 2022 at UIC headquarters in Paris. This was the first progress meeting since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic at which almost all consortium partners met once again in person.

The consortium partners reported on work completed to date, discussed the technical developments of the project, and exchanged on the ongoing tasks and project activities. The project implementation is progressing well. The beta version of the PROACTIVE mobile app is now available in the Google and Apple app stores, and the app is being improved continuously. Several partners agreed to conduct additional focus groups in 2022 to improve the validity of the civil society toolkit. The first PROACTIVE policy brief is ready to be published this month and other policy briefs will follow.

The next major project event is the field exercise in Dortmund to be held on 7 May 2022, and preparations are about to be finalised. This first field exercise, held jointly with EU H2020 project eNOTICE, will be based on a scenario of a chemical substance being released near a train station, leading to decontamination. A unique feature of PROACTIVE is that the role-play volunteers for the scenario are not actors or first responders, but rather civilians with little to no prior knowledge of such incidents. 15% of the volunteers will come from vulnerable groups.

Furthermore, on 6 and 7 April, the project held its first physical workshop with members of both the Practitioners Stakeholder Advisory Board (PSAB) and the Civil Society Advisory Board (CSAB). More than 40 participants from 15 different countries attended the event. The countries represented were Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden and the UK. The attendees covered all the main categories of the PROACTIVE PSAB and CSAB: LEAs, firefighters, medical responders, rail security experts and research/academia, as well as representatives of vulnerable groups.

The experts discussed the Dortmund exercise scenario including the observer’s guide, provided feedback on the pre-incident public information materials developed by PROACTIVE, and participated in an interactive session with the PROACTIVE Crisis Communication Platform.

The workshop also stimulated synergies between PROACTIVE and several other EU-funded projects such as Nightingale, INCLUDING, and BuildERS.

On the morning of 7 April, all the workshop participants contributed to a joint CSAB and PSAB tabletop exercise. The scenario included a CBRNe incident on a regional passenger train and the results will help PROACTIVE increase preparedness against CBRNe threats by reducing the gaps between security practitioners and the most vulnerable of the civil society. UIC will also use the tabletop exercise results to formulate recommendations for UIC members.

The next progress meeting will take place on 13-14 June in Lancaster, UK.

The PROACTIVE project (PReparedness against CBRNE threats through cOmmon Approaches between security praCTItioners and the VulnerablE civil society) has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 832981.

PROACTIVE can be followed on Twitter (@PROACTIVE_EU) as well as on LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/proactive-eu/) and the project website https://proactive-h2020.eu/.

For further information, please contact Grigore Havarneanu (PROACTIVE Project Coordinator) or Laura Petersen (Senior Security Research Advisor) havarneanu@uic.org; petersen@uic.org

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The PROACTIVE workshop participants attending the event at UIC in Paris
PROACTIVE consortium members at the 11th Progress Meeting
The Tabletop Exercise begins
A participant summarising the discussions from his table
The PROACTIVE workshop participants during the CBRNe rail tabletop exercise