About Risk-Net Project
Erasmus+ project "Risk and Security Governance Studies within Baltic – Nordic Academic Community of Practice" (No 2015-1-LT01-KA203-013467) is aiming to enhance risk and security governance capacities in the Baltic-Nordic region via the development of (1) the Academic Community of Practices (network) in Risk and Security Governance and (2) the interdisciplinary educational methodology based on digitalization of learning, teaching and training.
Constant presence of risks and uncertainties define contemporary societies. Europe 2020 strategy names security as one of the main societal challenges for the next decade (together with energy, resource efficiency, climate change, social cohesion, aging and health). The Baltic-Nordic region is in a historical omnipresence of threats to national security. Strategies of risk governance have been developed. These have been derived mainly from the public health, environmental and engineering studies and often fail to consider risk in its full complexity and its social context (Kasperson and Kasperson, 2008). In the face of the changing nature of risk sources – from energetic to cyber security, from social to national security – and changing pace of international geopolitical developments, the risk governance skills have to be constantly developed. These threats have changed in a way that the boundaries between internal (national) and external security are increasingly blurred as in the case of ISIS. To anticipate and address risks in a timely manner, and to achieve smart growth, the Europe 2020 strategy calls for strong governance. As Kasperson and Kasperson (2008) puts it, the ongoing complexification of risk, due to global threats and new technogenic risks, dictates the need for new risk governance skills, new governance methodologies, capable of addressing risk in its full modern complexity.
Recent events demonstrate the lack of risk and security governance capacities, decision-making and execution procedures within the governments and society at large. In addition, relevant infrastructure is as also lacking. Public officials (politicians and public servants) have insufficient capacities to act and execute risk-control plans during times of emergency and/or crisis. There is a lack of cooperation between different sectors. Moreover, universities, colleges and training institutions are not ready to offer and deliver adequate education, training programs and develop research products in the area of risk and security governance that would facilitate the development of relevant knowledge, capacities and innovative products. However some countries and universities in the region are more advanced in the area and have solid research record and stronger national capacities to deal with security issues, while others are lagging behind.
Due to their location, the Baltic – Nordic countries have become the northern frontier of the European Union, and thus, eight EU countries and Norway face various common risk and security governance challenges that require regional development through transnational cooperation. Yet, a weak exchange of best practices, expertise and experience with neighboring countries in this region has been observed. Despite the fact that the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region seeks to promote a more balanced development of the Baltic Sea Region, the risk and security governance issues do not gain substantial attention, especially within academic community. Smart growth (Europe 2020) requires improving the quality of education, strengthening research performance, promoting innovation and knowledge transfer. Knowledge transfer among different countries and institutions helps find out common challenges which can be better tackled together. Research cooperation can help find differences to answer the same challenge. Working together, streamlining their resources to ensure an effective and joined-up response could help achieving intended results that would lead towards the creation of strong and integrated societies of the Baltic – Nordic counties that are able to deal with risks and ensure security.
The aim of the project is to enhance risk and security governance capacities in the Baltic-Nordic region via the development of (1) the Academic Community of Practices (network) in Risk and Security Governance and (2) the interdisciplinary educational methodology based on digitalization of learning, teaching and training.
- to exchange know-how and expertise in Risk and Security Governance via strategic partnerships of Baltic-Nordic academic communities;
- to develop interdisciplinary curricula on risk and security studies that will be integrated in the study and training programmes of the Baltic-Nordic academic institutions;
- to establish learning infrastructure using advanced and innovative learning and teaching technologies for enhancing risk and security governance awareness and competences;
- to enhance awareness and competences in risk and security governance of various stakeholders and professional groups to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the potential effects of all types of disasters and emergencies. Target groups: HEI‘s academic community (teachers, students, researchers), public officials, business and industry, community and NGO‘s representatives and society at large.