EU-HYBNET - Empowering a Pan-European Network to Counter Hybrid Threats

Ongoing project

Agreement no.: 883054

Period of implementation: May 2020 – April 2025

Participating organizations:

Laurea University of Applied Sciences – Finland

City of Espoo – Finland

Hybrid CoE – Finland

Polish Platform for Homeland Security (PPHS) – Poland

Polish Internal Security Agency – Poland

University of Tromso (UiT) – Norway

Norvegian Directorate for Civil Protection – Norway

Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) – Sweden

Center for Security Studies (KEMEA) – Greece

Satways – Greece

Implementation of the Lithuanian Cybercrime Centre of Excellence for Training, Research & Education (L3CE) – Lithuania

Universidad Rey Juan Carlo (URJC) – Spain

Maldita – Spain

Local Police of the city of Valence – Spain

French Ministry of Ecological and Solidarity Transition – France

Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) – The Netherlands

Netherlands Ministry of Defense – The Netherlands

Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore – Italy

“Mihai Viteazul” National Information Academy (ANIMV) – Romania

German Central Offica for Information Technology in the Security Sector – Germany

Competence Center COMTESSA – Germany

Estonian Information System Authority – Estonia

Joint Research Centre European Commission (JRC)

European Organization for Security (EOS)


Empowering a Pan-European Network to Counter Hybrid Threats” (EU-HYBNET) – is a five year project funded by the European Commission (No. 883054) Horizon 2020 Programme. The EU-HYBNET is a Pan-European network of collaborating security practitioners, stakeholders, academics, industry players, and SME actors across EU, in ever increasing numbers to counter hybrid threats. The project consortium consists of 25 organisations representing 16 European countries.

The aim of the project is to develop a European network to prepare for, detect and counter hybrid threats. The European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats (Hybrid CoE) located in Helsinki Finland, is the main content provider for the whole project.

“Mihai Viteazul” National Intelligence Academy, as partner within this project, deals with part of the research process and will also be host of a series of workshops taking place in Bucharest.

More information can be found on the Project’s website –


EU-HYBNET project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 883054.

Kick-off meeting



THESEUS - Connect the Disconnections - from Disparate Data to Insightful Analysis

Ongoing project

Agreement no.: 18-COP-0017

Period of implementation: October 1st, 2019 – September 30th, 2021

Participating organisations:

“Mihai Viteazul” National Information Academy (ANIMV) – Romania

University of Malta (UoM) – Malta

Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) – Norway

National University of Political Studies and Public Administration (SNSPA) – Romania


THESEUS Project aims at Connecting the Disconnections between Disparate Data, in order to provide knowledge for building Insightful Analysis. The broad availability of data has led to increasing interest in methods for extracting useful information and knowledge from data, determining the emergence of new fields of science (e.g. data science). At the same time, big data algorithms have been signaled as a potential leverage that can lead to digital dictatorship if insufficiently understood, poorly handled and unethically regulated. Companies in every industry focused on ways to structure, process and analyze the growing volume and diversity of data so as to streamline decisions and gain a competitive edge. State institutions, regular citizens, social and political science practitioners on the other hand, are not yet properly equipped to properly mitigate the economic, social and political impact of the information technology revolution that awaits us in the decades to come. Therefore, in the process of understanding and mitigating risks and opportunities of Big Data, complex workloads, new skills and competences have to be acquired.

Following these emerging needs, the objective of the project is to enhance human capital and knowledge base by tackling directly skills and competences required and providing an understanding of the processes guiding big data analytics.

This objective will be met by building and delivering a course, consisting of four modules, capitalizing on big data methodologies: introductory module, data collection module, data processing module and data analysis module.

The course will not be designed as a technologically focused course, but rather a knowledge, awareness and understanding focused course.  The course avoids an algorithm-centered approach. It focuses on how options are understood and choices and tradeoffs are designed. Thus, it enhances, through learning by doing, key-competences and skills required in collecting, understanding, correlating and processing big data, helping them streamline problem-solving processes in a data-driven ecosystem.

The project addresses two professional categories: governance and social scientists and national security practitioners, whose complementary work is of paramount importance in insuring the sustainable development of democracy.

THESEUS Project is part of the Education, Scholarships, Apprenticeships and Youth Entrepreneurship Programme in Romania, being funded by the EEA Grants – Financial Mechanism 2014-2021.


Ongoing project

Grant agreement no. 823683

Implementation period: January, 2019 – December, 2020

Participating organizations:




SYNYO GmbH – Austria







ARMOUR Project aims to address societal polarization via strengthening resilience of individuals, communities and vulnerable groups (such as children, youth, etc.) to polarisation, and to promote interaction and cooperation between different local actors from public sectors, i.e. law enforcement, social services, etc., that specialise in working with vulnerable groups in preventing extremism through development of cooperation models. The project will design and create a Toolkit for first-line practitioners to employ in reducing polarization among children and youth.

The Toolkit, capitalizing on previous work carried out by project partners, takes the form of experimental laboratories (experimental labs) which together work towards: strengthening individual capacity to resist push and pull factors of radicalization; creating community empowerment and resilience to social polarization and violent extremism and assisting states deploy proportional responses against provocations and latent conflicts. The model will then be promoted through a social media campaign.

The expected impact of the project covers the following aspects:

  • Increasing awareness and capacity of first-line practitioners: ARMOUR achieves this through the experimental labs and the related training programme. The first tool will help practitioners better understand and identify instances of radicalization and polarization among children and youth while the second one will help them improve their ability to use the project toolkit.
  • Promoting interaction and cooperation among different stakeholders: ARMOUR achieves this by organizing the experimental labs in which practitioners and members of vulnerable communities have trusted interactions.
  • Promoting the views of moderate voices by engaging with the silent majority and integrating them into the experimental lab.
  • Developing and promoting concrete tools targeting vulnerable groups: the experimental lab combined with the best practices identified in the project and the online campaign are concrete tools which key actors can use when working with vulnerable youth.

ESSENTIAL – Evolving Security SciencE through Networked Technologies, Information policy and Law

Ongoing project

ESSENTIAL – project funded by the Horizon2020 Programme of the European Union

Period of implementation

January 1st 2017 – December 31st 2020

ESSENTIAL is a 4-year European project, with an estimated budget of 3.756.496,68 euro (MVNIA budget – 645.206,04 euro). ESSENTIAL provides an European Joint Doctoral Studies program in the field of intelligence and national security. It aims to train inter-disciplinary security experts and professionals, to tackle security threats in a systematic manner and

to increase societal resilience and security by addressing in an interdisciplinary manner 15 research topics, each associated with long-standing problems in the field of security science.

CRESCEnt - Mind the gap in media CoveRagE and Strategic communication in CasE of security Threats

Ongoing project

Strategic partnership project within ERASMUS+ Program

AGREEMENT No. – 2018-1-RO01-KA202-049449

Implementation period: October 1st, 2018 – September 30th, 2020

Participating organizations:

  • “Mihai Viteazul” National Intelligence Academy (MVNIA) – Romania
  • University “Rey Juan Carlos” (URJC) – Spain
  • Kentro Meleton Asfaleias (KEMEA), Center For Security Studies – Greece
  • Ministry of Internal Affairs, Directorate for Information and Public Relations (MAI-DIRP) – Romania

Project abstract

CRESCEnt creates a training platform and a set of communication and cross-sectorial strategic communication instruments, which aim to capacitate institutional spokespersons and journalists from security and LEA fields, in order to use media reporting to the public in a conscious and ethical manner.

Here can be found more details.

SAFFRON – Semantic Analysis against Foreign Fighters Recruitment Online Networks

Project completed

SAFFRON – project co-funded by the Internal Security Fund – Preventing Radicalisation to Terrorism and Violent Extremism

Period of implementation February

1st 2016 –January 31st 2018

Semantic Analysis against Foreign Fighters Recruitment Online Network (SAFFRON) is a 2-year European project (February 2016-January 2018) with a budget of 672 244,62 euro (MVNIA budget – 19.134,70 euro). SAFFRON is cofunded by the Internal Security Fund of the European Union.

The aim of SAFFRON is to build a system able to support early detection of foreign fighters recruitment by terrorist groups in Europe, with a focus on ISIS and Al-Qaeda. It consists in studying recruitment communication strategies on social media (e.g. narrations, argumentative tropes and myths used), and their evolution in time, as well as identification of needs, values, cultural and social contexts of the target.

The output of the project is a software tool used by all relevant players to identify in a timely fashion both all internet activities of direct and indirect recruitment of Foreign Fighters and all signals (weak or strong) pointing at radicalization of single individuals.

CARISMAND - Culture And RISkmanagement in Man-made And Natural Disasters

Project completed

Taking into account that risks are rather not „non-objective” but socially and culturally constructed, disaster management observes and uses local cultural aspects, an approach which is not only efficient, but also improves the community’s disaster response capacities.

CARISMAND aims at identifying these factors, exploring existing gaps and opportunities for improvement of disaster policies and procedures, and developing a complex set of tools enabling professional and voluntary disaster managers adopt culturally-aware practices on a daily basis.

This can be achieved by approaching the links and gaps among disaster management, culture, and risk perception from a wide multidisciplinary point of view and, simustaneously, by developing feedback between disaster management stakeholders and citizens to establish, test, and redefine solutions for culturally-informed best practices in disaster management. While experts from various fields (especially legal, IT, cognitive sciences, anthropology, psychology, sociology) will provide a comprehensive collation of existing knowledge and structures, Citizen Summits and Stakeholder Assemblies will be organized.

Systematically, CARISMAND will address natural, man-made, and technical disasters, focussing on specific aspects that affect risk perception by culturally-informed individuals (e.g. disasters caused intentionally or not, hazard “visibility”, various disaster time scales). By organizing summits (Citizen Summits), two per disaster category per year in two different locations where the occurrence of such risks is prominent, and 3 meetings of policy makers (Stakeholder Assemblies), one per year, to discuss the results through a cross-sectional transfer of knowledge between disaster managers from various areas as well as from different cultural backgrounds.

The project will contribute to the improvement of crisis management capabilities in the case of terrorist attacks or other potential threats to national security.

CityCOP - Citizen Interaction Technologies Yield Community Policing

Project completed

The activity of the community police has received a new impetus with the recent emergence of smartphones and social media, and in particular user generated content (UGC) in which citizens engage in close interaction with the local community and law enforcement agency (LEA). The period 2010 – 2014 witnessed a rapid development of smartphone applications intended to improve the process of crime and other forms of UGC reporting and interaction associated with community policing.

However, applications are marked by a Anglo-Saxon approach, most of them originating in the United States, Canada and Australia with UK apparently being the only country from the European Union which adopted these technologies. CITYCoP aims at identifying why the European Union seems to be lagging behind, despite the fact that Community Policing has been implemented in several European countries. At the same time, CITYCoP aims at identifying solutions, including a new smartphone application and an online portal that can be used in any European city,  while preserving “local flavor” and  diversity.

These ICT solutions will be designed from scratch to comply with strict privacy and data  protection laws. A training program, which includes games, will be developed to improve officers and citizens’ training in using both the application and the online  portal.

CITYCoP will benefit from a multidisciplinary approach which will  include community policing sociology and cognitive science perspectives related to the technological interaction among citizens, the community and LEAs.

After years of successful  cooperation in European projects on UGC, smart surveillance, and personal privacy (CONSENT, SMART, RESPECT), CITYCoP Partners have developed solutions that would lead to CITYCoP integration into smart ecosystems. CITYCoP will implement multilingual applications for smartphone, portals and packages of games for training workshops in Bucharest (Romania), Lyon (France), Florence (Italy), and Sheffield (UK).

Through its results, the project will strengthen the partnership with civil society, and increase awareness as an essential component of national security; the citizen is not only the beneficiary, but also the contributor to the achievement of national security related goals.


Project completed

Implementation period

October 1st, 2015 – September 30th, 2017

Project abstract

Starting from the assumption that the risk perceived is a complex concept, defined as the possibility that a negative occurrence takes place and whose perception differs from one individual to the next, our research project proposes the use of qualitative research methods (Q sort method) in order to measure and define Romanians’ knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding national security risks. Therefore, the objective of our research consists in the elaboration of solutions for the optimization of the management of security risks and communication strategies for national security institutions, through the analysis and evaluation of social perception over national security risks. REACT project aims to improve the research skills on risk perception of the research team members through their involvement in conducting sociological research in a relatively new field at national level: social risk perception analysis. Having greater knowledge in the field of social risk perception can thus improve the quality and impact of decisions throughout society, and the quality of risk communication strategies. In the same time, the project contributes to the development of the field of risks perception analysis, by training specialists for high level academic research, young experts well-read and highly proficient in risk analysis methods, who can face the new academic challenges.

The project is developed within the framework of the National Plan for Research, Development and Innovation 2007-2014, Human Resources Program, Young Research Teams Subprogram (PN II-RU-TE-2014-4-1669), regulated by contract no. 335 / 10.01.2015.

The objective of this research project is to improve national practices used in risk management and risk communication, by supporting experts and security professionals in developing effective communication strategies. The research will help improve national security early warning systems as well as the integration of social perceptions as a work variable into the decision making process.

The study on national security risks perception and on the measures to corroborate communication of the identified risks will be disseminated to the national intelligence community in Romania in order to improve the projection process for communication strategies.

Through the research, the project aims at the following outcomes:

  • research paper on Romanian society’s perceptions concerning national security risks
  • participation of project members in national and international conferences in the field of intelligence and security studies, on topics subscribed to the area of the proposed research project
  • dedicated volume with international acknowledgement, published by a nationally recognized publishing house
  • workshop with representatives from four targeted groups: academics, private, civic (NGOs) and public institutions (national security structures and bodies)
  • workshop dedicated to the completion of the REACT project and the launching of the dedicated volume comprising the research results

The project team is made up of:

  • Dr. Irena Chiru, Project Manager, director of the National Institute for Intelligence Studies of ANIMV, with a PhD in sociology at the University of Bucharest, expert in communication and social perceptions
  • Dr. Nicula Valentin, researcher at the National Institute for Intelligence Studies of ANIMV, with a PhD in Intelligence and National Security at the Doctoral School of ANIMV
  • Dr. Valentin Stoian, researcher at the National Institute for Intelligence Studies of ANIMV, has a PhD in Political Sciences at the Central European University in Budapest, specialist in political science and corruption
  • Dr. Ivan Cristina, researcher at the National Institute for Intelligence Studies of ANIMV, with a PhD at the Doctoral School of Literary and Cultural Studies, University of Bucharest, specialist in applied research of the phenomena of radicalization and terrorism

Project endorsed by the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research and Innovation and financed by the Executive Unit for Higher Education, Research, Development and Innovation Financing.


– Round table March 2016 (agenda and participants list)

– Round table October 2016 (agenda)


No. crt. Type Name
1 Article “Russian Expansionism as a National Security Threat for Romania: Historical Origins”, Revista Română de Studii de Intelligence, 2016 (Etapa:2)
2 Article ”Communication Strategy and Risk Awareness”, Revista Română de Studii de Intelligence, 2016 (Etapa:2)
3 Article “Violence transgression and risk perception. Hospitality as a paradigm shift.”, Revista Română de Studii de Intelligence, 2016 (Etapa:2)
4 Conference presentation SCOPE 2016: Science of politics; 3rd International Interdisciplinary Conference of Political Research, București, 2016 (Etapa:2)
5 Conference presentation 12th Annual IAFIE Conference, Breda, Olanda, 2016 (Etapa:2)
6 Conference presentation 12th Annual IAFIE Conference, Breda, Olanda, 2016 (Etapa:2)
7 Conference presentation Decline or eclipse of democracy in Europe’s New Democracies?, Belgrad, Serbia, 2016 (Etapa:2)
8 Conference presentation International Conference Intelligence in the Knowledge Society (22nd edition), București, România, 2016 (Etapa:2)
9 Conference presentation International Conference Intelligence in the Knowledge Society (22nd edition), București, România, 2016 (Etapa:2)
10 Conference presentation Congresul internațional Mind Over Technology, București, România, 2016 (Etapa:2)
11 Conference presentation ECREA 2016 – 6th European Communication Conference, Praga, Cehia, 2016 (Etapa:2)
12 Conference presentation Political Masculinities as Agents of Change Interdisciplinary Conference, Cambridge, Marea Britanie, 2016 (Etapa:2)
13 Conference presentation Fear, Horror and Terror. Special Focus: (in)Security, Oxford, Marea Britanie, 2016 (Etapa:2)
14 Book Chapter “Globalized violence and the new sites of contestation”, Fear, Horror, Terror and Insecurity, Inter-Disciplinary.Net, Priory House, Oxfordshire, UK, 2016

ACTIVITY REPORTS: 2015 and 2016


This work was supported by a grant of the Romanian National Authority for Scientific Research and Innovation CNCS-UEFISCDI Project number PN-II-RU-TE-2014-4-1669

INTELLISEC – Dezvoltarea unui Centru Național de Cercetare în Intelligence şi Securitate

Project completed

The National Center for Research in Intelligence and Security – INTELLISEC was developed within the European Union’s national funding Program – Sectoral Operational Programme ”Increase of Economic Competitiveness”, aiming to increase the efficiency of the research activity, as well as enhancing the intelligence processes conducted within public and private institutions, identifying and implementing innovative solutions in intelligence and developing complex intelligence products, that will determine an increase of economic competitiveness. Within the project, MVNIA developed The National Center for Research in Intelligence and Security – INTELLISEC, organized three distinct laboratories (Modeling and simulation in intelligence, Innovative analytical methods, OSINT analysis) that use innovative analytical software.


Project completed

OSCINT XXI was co-funded by the European Social Fund  through the SECTORAL OPERATIONAL HUMAN RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM (2007-2013). The project’s goal was to support human resources development and increase competitiveness by correlating lifelong learning processes with labor market demands. As the main beneficiary, “Mihai Viteazul” National Intelligence Academy’s mission was to provide intelligence education and promote innovative knowledge society solutions. It was a new iteration of another OSCINT 2009 project addressed to a group of approximately 1,200 people, lower and higher secondary school teachers, who underwent training in digital and innovative knowledge society solutions.

ARMLET – Setting-up an Air Marshal Training Centre

Project completed

ARMLET was a project funded by the European Commission through the Prevention and Fight against Crime Project – ISEC 2013. The opening conference hosted renowned experts in the field of aviation security from Germany, France, Netherlands, Great Britain, the Czech Republic, the United States of America, Romania, and the Republic of Moldova. The project covered 24 months, between July 2014 and June 2016, and was aimed at strengthening relevant institutions’ operational capacities in the field of fighting against in-flight threats by creating a training center for security officers specialized in this field.