Hybrid crisis readiness – A tabletop exercise

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Peace, Security & Defence
Hybrid Warfare Readiness – A tabletop exercise


This report draws attention to the urgency to improve cooperation between the public and the private sectors in order to increase readiness and resilience to hybrid challenges.

Friends of Europe’s annual online tabletop simulation exercise brought together senior officials and experts from NATO, the EU, national authorities, the media and business to test their collective response to a range of credible hybrid threat scenarios. Based on the findings of the innovative exercise, the report identifies eight recommendations to improve cooperation between the public and private sectors in order to deter, detect and defend societies from hybrid attacks and to increase whole-of-society resilience.

The novelty of this innovative exercise was to assess any improvement on the vulnerabilities identified in the 2019 exercise, as well as how to deal with emerging issues such as our increased reliance on resilient electrical systems and new developments regarding the impact of disinformation on societies during crisis. This second exercise also emphasised the role of cities and local actors, who often serve as the first line of defence and first responders in hybrid challenges.



With 80-90% of all critical infrastructure owned and operated by the private sector in many Western countries, it is crucially important to ensure public-private cooperation is effective, that communication channels are working and that roles and responsibilities are correctly assigned and understood when faced with hybrid crises.

Following our 2019 tabletop simulation exercise “Hybrid warfare readiness: a tabletop exercise”, Friends of Europe will gather senior officials and experts from NATO, the EU, national authorities, the media, business and members of the public to test their collective responsiveness to a range of credible hybrid threat scenarios and build on our recommendations for improving cooperation among the key actors affected by such crises.

The exercise will be held behind closed doors and is by invitation only. The outcomes and key recommendations will be widely distributed.

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Participants include

Philipp Amann

Head of Europol’s Expertise and Stakeholder Management Unit

Lukas Andriukaitis

Associate Director at the Atlantic Council of the United States Digital Forensic Research Lab

Rubén Arcos

Rey Juan Carlos University

Cristina Arribas

Intelligence Analyst, social media insights and geopolitics

Luís Barreira de Sousa

Ambassador for Cyberdiplomacy at the portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Hanneke Brouwer

Seconded national expert at the European Centre of Excellence for Civilian Crisis Management

Kostas Dervenis

Senior Sales Manager at Intrasoft International

Maria do Rosario Penedos

Coter Delegate & Hybrid WP Chair at the Permanent Representation of Portugal to the EU

Amy-Anne Fairhurst

Global Head of Crisis Management & EMEA Head of Cyber Investigations, Citi Security & Investigative Services at Citigroup

Jon France

Head of Industry Security at GSMA

Jessica Giandomenico

Head of research and analysis at Earhart Business Protection Agency

Caroline Groene

Policy Advisor, Cybersecurity & Digital Diplomacy, European Government Affairs, Microsoft

Klaus Gundolf

Head of Internal Crisis Management Team at Siemens

Jonathan Toby Harris

Member of the House of Lords, Chair of the National Preparedness Commissio, former Chairof the Metropolitan Police Authority, and former Reviewer of London’s terrorist preparedness

Vadim Ivanov

Deputy director at the Estonian Rescue College

Ana Cristina Jorge

Director of Operational Response Division at the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (FRONTEX)

Andrej Kavar

PMG Coordinator at the Permanent Representation of Slovenia to the EU

Gilles De Kerchove

EU Counter-Terrorism Coordinator at the Council of the European Union General Secretariat

Athanasios Kosmopoulos

Data Protection Officer at the Greek Ministry of Digital Governance

Stefan Kowitz

Director at the Multinational Medical Coordination Center/European Medical Command

Chris Kremidas-Courtney

Senior Fellow for Peace, Security & Defence at Friends of Europe and Lecturer for Institute for Security Governance (ISG) in Monterey, California

Rosamund Lewis

Head of the Smallpox Secretariat, Emerging Diseases and Zoonoses Unit, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization

Hanna Linderstål

CEO of the Earhart Business Protection Agency

Iivi Luuk

Policy Officer for Civil Protection Policy at the European Commission Directorate-General for Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO)

Merle Maigre

Senior Expert on Cyber Security at the e-Governance Academy Foundation

Paivi Mattila

Director of Security Research Program at the Laurea University of Applied Sciences and EU-HYBNET project coordinator

Rémi Mayet

Deputy Head of Unit for energy security and safety at the European Commission Directorate General for Energy

Tarik Meziani

Head of Unit for Media Operations at the Council of the European Union Directorate-General for Communication and Information

Megan Minnion

Policy Officer at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Operations Division (OPS)

Juerguen Muntenaar

Deputy Director for NATO Matters at the Multinational Medical Coordination Center/ European Medical Command

Baroness Pauline Neville-Jones

Member of the House of the Lords National Security Strategy Joint Committee, former minister of state in the United Kingdom and Trustee of Friends of Europe

Cyril Nguyen

Safety Director at ENGIE

Qëndron Kastrati

Mayor of the Municipality of Kamenica, Kosovo, and European Young Leader

Julian Patzina

Senior Security Manager at Siemens

Wayne C. Raabe

Director of Interagency Partnering at the U.S. European Command (USEUCOM)

Vira Ratsiborynska

Research analyst at North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence

Clare Roberts

Senior Policy Coordinator for Hybrid Warfare/Resilience at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Operations Division (OPS)

Shaun Romeril

Lead consultant at 2creatEffects and former Police Officer at the Metropolitan Police and senio advisor for counter terrorism strategy

Alessio Rugo

Head of the Audit and Security Section at the Telematics Department - IT Service, General Command of the Guardia di Finanza

Shiho Rybski

Director of Exercises at The European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats (Hybrid CoE)

Burcu San

Director of Operations at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Operations Division (OPS)

Hans Schoemaker

Political Administrator at the Council of the European Union Directorate for Foreign Affairs, Enlargement and Civil Protection

Teri Schultz

Freelance Reporter for NPR and Deutsche Welle; Podcast Host, Atlantic Council

Jamie Shea

Senior Fellow for Peace, Security and Defence at Friends of Europe, and former Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)

Edvardas Šileris

Head of Europol's European Cybercrime Centre

Sabrina Spieleder

Policy Officer at the European External Action Service (EEAS) Division Strategic Communications and Information Analysis

Alice Stollmeyer

Founder & Executive Director of Defend Democracy

Miklós Szócska

Board member of the European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG)

Paul Taylor

Senior Fellow for Peace, Security and Defence at Friends of Europe

Renata Vertovsek

Head of Section for civil capabilities and crisis response at the Slovenian Ministry of Defence

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PHOTO CREDIT: Bigstock/Rost-9



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