Government Europa Quarterly 26: cybersecurity and digitisation

Government Europa Quarterly 26: cybersecurity and digitisation

Editor Elysia Carr introduces issue 26 of Government Europa Quarterly, which focuses on cybersecurity and digitisation, and includes contributions from European Commissioner Marianne Thyssen and the European Defence Agency’s Salvador Llopis Sanchez.

In May, the European Commission announced its newest proposal for the EU Budget, which will see a commitment of €1,279 billion over the period 2021-2027. The budget shows the commission’s renewed commitment to: cohesion policy and values; natural resources and the environment; the single market, innovation and digital; migration and border management; cybersecurity and digitisation; and neighbourhood development and international co-operation.

Moreover, member states across the EU are exploring the ways in which a ban on single-use plastics and microbeads can be enforced in order to decontaminate and clean up the world’s oceans and waterways and, as a result, eradicate the risk of injury and fatality to aquatic life.

Meanwhile, in June, US President Donald Trump met with Kim Jong-Un, the leader of North Korea, at the US-North Korea summit in Singapore. In the momentous meeting, the USA hoped to reach an agreement which would oversee the denuclearisation of North Korea, whilst North Korea aimed to gain recognition, seeing Kim acknowledged as a world leader. The leaders signed an agreement which made opaque gestures towards the denuclearisation of North Korea, whilst Trump ordered the suspension of US military exercises within South Korea.

Closer to home, this edition of Government Europa Quarterly explores the policy frameworks which are shaping Europe today. The European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility, Marianne Thyssen, explores how the 2018 Pensions Adequacy Report will deliver pension adequacy for all European citizens. Meanwhile, the Big Science Business Forum 2018, GEQ spoke to Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, about the relationship between science and industry, and how working relationships can be fostered.

With smart and interconnected living high on the regional agenda, the role of digital technologies and solutions are increasing in prevalence. Secretary general of the European Water Association (EWA) Johannes Lohaus thus explores how the EWA is working to deliver a sustainable water sector going forwards, through the means of legislation, regulation, recognition and collaboration throughout the EU. Discussing the legacy of the MK:Smart project, Alan Fletcher, business development manager at the Knowledge Media Institute, Open University, explores how Milton Keynes continues to pioneer the smart city revolution and the priorities of cybersecurity and digitisation.

April saw the Transport Research Arena 2018 explore the transport sector through a digital framework, ‘A digital era for transport’. In attendance, Government Europa Quarterly spoke to the Director of Digital Society, Trust and Cybersecurity under the European Commission’s DG CONNECT, Despina Spanaou, about the relationship between the digital single market and the transport sector. With keynote speeches from Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc and the Director-General of DG MOVE, Henrik Hololei, GEQ also reports on the priorities that will see development for transport policy and practice.

Showcasing the extensive work being put into delivering positive changes to the environment in Europe, this edition explores the projects and institutions which are working to preserve biodiversity and bolster conservation efforts in the EU. Managing Director of Rewilding Europe Frans Schepers discusses how the organisation is working to support a new conservation narrative – one which aims to restore both ecosystems and biodiversity: rewilding. Working as a senior research fellow at the Institute of Zoology, Zoological Society of London, UK, Dr Nathalie Pettorelli then answers GEQ’s questions, exploring the importance and effect of policy on biodiversity and rewilding efforts.

In line with the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027, which illustrates the importance of a focus upon security, defence and digital technologies, Salvador Llopis Sanchez at the European Defence Agency explores how rapid technological advancements have impacted upon Europe’s cybersecurity and digitisation strategies. Then, Matt Ellard, vice-president of the European, Middle Eastern and African Region at Tanium, looks retrospectively at the WannaCry ransomware attack and discusses how healthcare organisations are working to bolster defences, prior to the next cybersecurity crisis.

Elysia Carr
Government Europa Quarterly


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