Training local authorities to provide citizens with a safe urban environment by reducing the risks in public spaces
Secu4All aims to empower local and regional authorities with theoretical knowledge and practical tools to ensure the security of public spaces and the protection of soft targets (i.e. sports venues, shopping centres, schools,…) against potential threats. Specific training programs will be developed in the following four areas: vulnerability assessment, crisis communication, innovative technologies & urban planning.
Public spaces in cities are dense and rich places of exchange, culture, commerce and leisure, among others. Because they are highly frequented and have an open character, they can be subject to a number of threats, such as terrorism, crime, natural disaster or crowd gatherings. Ensuring that public spaces remain open, accessible, inclusive and safe is a complex challenge.
Local and regional authorities are well placed to design and manage safe public spaces with a co-production approach, involving a wide range of local stakeholders from the public and private sectors (urban planners, first responders, mobility services, local businesses etc.). To fulfil their role, local and regional authorities must be equipped with adequate skills and tools to coordinate actions and anticipate threats.
The Secu4All project will implement a holistic approach that takes into account the potential threat of terrorism as well as other crimes and possibly forms of incivility in public spaces and soft targets that have a considerable impact on the security and feeling of insecurity of citizens. Furthermore, major crises (whether economic or otherwise) have repercussions for security, as security issues are deeply linked to those of social ties and cohesion. The COVID19 health crisis, with its socio-economic impacts, clearly attests to the need for a holistic perspective that allows cities to respond to the different risks and threats that may occur in public spaces. Through training local authorities and other local actors involved in the security and the design, management and planning of public spaces, the project intends to mainstream elements of prevention, protection, reaction and anticipation into urban security policies in order to ensure safer public spaces that remain open, accessible and inclusive for all users.
The security and management of public spaces involves a broad range of actors. This is why Secu4All promotes a multi-stakeholder approach and coordinates local actors, including law enforcement agencies, first responders, civil society organisations, private sector actors and community representatives.
Training and exchange of practices are necessary to improve the capacity of local and regional authorities to develop coordinated actions and to be able to anticipate and prepare for future threats. This is why Secu4All aims to empower local and regional authorities with theoretical knowledge and practical tools to ensure the security of public spaces and the protection of soft targets (i.e. sports venues, shopping centres, schools,…) against potential threats.
More specifically, with an integrated approach, the project will increase the knowledge and skills of local actors across four dimensions:
methods and tools to identify, analyse, and assess vulnerabilities in local public spaces and soft targets;
crisis communication with relevant stakeholders and citizens (before, during and after a crisis);
use of innovative technologies to enhance the protection of public spaces and its ethical implications
reducing citizens’ feeling of insecurity by means of urban planning design and management of public spaces
As for the project’s expected impact, local and regional authorities will be aware of their leading role in the security of public spaces. They will be better equipped to respond to the risks present in these spaces and will be able to anticipate and prepare for potential threats. In this sense, Secu4All will have provided the necessary tools for improved coordination and collaboration between the different actors involved in the security of public spaces and the protection of soft targets. Finally, the project will allow local and regional authorities to share good practices and lessons learned with each other.
Activities and results
The project’s objectives will be achieved through the design of an integrated training programme, including:
an e-learning platform with the training content in Italian, German, English and French for greater reach and sustainability of the project’s outcomes;
4 interactive training modules composed of online sessions, on-site practical exercises and case studies;
Implementation of training for security and other relevant actors from more than 6 European cities (around 160 people);
Development of guidelines and training material for each of the four modules;
4 field visits to cities with significant expertise in the protection of public spaces and soft targets in order to consolidate the knowledge and skills in relation to each training module;
3 local workshops;
2 European events.
The role of Efus
Efus coordinates the Secu4All project.
The Secu4All project is composed of a consortium of 13 partners, including:
4 local and regional authorities: Brussels Capital Region (Belgium), Riga Municipal Police (Latvia), City of Xábia (Spain), City of The Hague (Netherlands)
5 organisations and academic partners: European Organisation for Security-EOS, The Center for Security Studies-KEMEA (Greece), Dutch Institute for Technology, Safety & Security (DITSS), Dsp-groep Bv-DSP (Netherlands), CRIMINA centre of the Miguel Hernandez University in Elche (Spain)
3 national Fora : German, French and Italian Forum for Urban Security (DEFUS, FFSU, FISU)