Societal Challenge 7 (SC7) – Secure societies – Protecting freedom and security of Europe and its citizens

Europe has never been so peacefully consolidated, and the levels of security enjoyed by European citizens are high, compared to other parts of the world. However, Europe’s vulnerability continues to exist in a context of ever-increasing globalisation in which societies are facing security threats and challenges that are growing in scale and sophistication.
The specific objective of this area is to foster secure European societies in a context of unprecedented transformations and growing global interdependencies and threats, while strengthening the European culture of freedom and justice.

The focus of activities is to:
• fight crime, illegal trafficking and terrorism, including understanding and tackling terrorist ideas and beliefs;
• protect and improve the resilience of critical infrastructures, supply chains and transport modes;
• strengthen security through border management;
• improve cyber security;
• increase Europe’s resilience to crises and disasters;
• ensure privacy and freedom, including in the Internet, and enhance the societal legal and ethical understanding of all areas of security, risk and management;
• enhance standardisation and interoperability of systems, including for emergency purposes;
• support the Union’s external security policies, including conflict prevention and peace building.

This Challenge should bring together all security stakeholders: industry – including SMEs, research organisations, universities, as well as public authorities, non-governmental organisations and public and private organisations in the security domain. The active involvement of end-users is of high importance.

The Secure Societies Challenge will contribute to the implementation of the policy goals of the Europe 2020 strategy, the Security Industrial Policy, the Internal Security Strategy and the Cyber Security Strategy.

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