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Network Centric Operations Center Launches Crisis Management Program

IBM and the Finnish Defence Forces to Develop Solutions for Stability Operations and Emergency Disaster Relief

HELSINKI, FINLAND - 28 Jun 2006: The European Network Centric Operations Centre of Excellence (CoE), a joint innovation hub of the Finnish Defence Forces (FDF) and IBM, has developed a new Crisis Management Program to address critical aspects and challenges associated with inter-agency collaboration and data exchange in crisis situations. The new program aims at the creation of solutions supporting virtual organizations of multinational coalitions and cross-organizational crisis teams. The program solutions build on open standards and common-off-the-shelf (COTS) products, and leverage Services Oriented Architecture (SOA).

In crisis situations, it is imperative to rapidly assemble multinational coalitions and cross-organizational teams with the expertise required to respond effectively. These teams need the ability to coordinate and communicate with each other, across jurisdictional boundaries.

The new European Network Centric Operations Centre of Excellence program was established to develop cutting edge solutions for multinational, inter-agency and non-governmental organizations to communicate and collaborate during stability operations and emergency disaster relief. The new initiative will be open to interested governmental agencies, industrial partners and universities.

The new program builds on the recent successful completion of the CoE's first proof of concept demonstrating of the scalability, down to the laptop level, and the online/offline functionality of the Services Oriented Architecture. Specifically, this proof of concept showed how a common operational picture and collaboration can be maintained and synchronized from a headquarters through a regional command post down to the mobile units, which may be operating in an area of limited connectivity.

"Finland has a long tradition of inter-agency collaboration in emergency situations. The CoE in Helsinki is, therefore, a logical hub to develop innovative technologies and processes to address the critical requirements for collaboration and interoperability in stability operations and emergency disaster relief worldwide," said Colonel Kyösti Halonen, Chief of C4 Division of the Finnish Defence Forces.

"When a crisis occurs, military, governmental and non-government organizations that are part of a crisis management response team have an immediate need to be connected and to collaborate as a single virtual organization. The composition and activities of a crisis management coalition are driven by the often-changing operational requirements of the crisis itself. Therefore, they require flexible and user-friendly solutions while maintaining the critical element of interoperability," said Dr. Lawrence Sellin, Network Centric Operations Solutions Leader, IBM Global Business Services, Public Sector.

Contact(s) information

Lia Papa
IBM USA
202.515.5499
lia.papa@us.ibm.com

Lieutenant Colonel (Eng.) Mika Hyytiäinen
Finnish Defence Forces Defence Staff, C4 Division
+358 40 821 0675
mika.hyytiainen@mil.fi

IBM Finland

+358 9 459 5900
ibmficom@fi.ibm.com

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