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Security Experts Cite Need for Major Policy Changes to Protect Global Security in Report to NATO and the European Union

New report by the Security & Defence Agenda, compiled in collaboration with IBM, presents recommendations on security challenges from global on-line brainstorming session

BRUSSELS, - 10 May 2010: The Security & Defence Agenda (SDA) and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced the key findings from the first ever Security Jam, a global on-line brainstorming session on the challenges facing global security.

The new SDA report to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and European Union (EU) outlines 10 recommendations from the February Security Jam, which brought together nearly 4,000 military, diplomatic and civilian experts from 124 countries during a five-day period to discuss topics ranging from crisis preparedness and human rights to environmental security and rising world powers.  Central themes resulting from the Security Jam were the need for closer collaboration between NATO and the EU, and more civilian involvement and collaboration with the military in protecting global security.  

The top recommendations were:  

"Finding viable solutions to today's security challenges requires new thinking and collaboration on a global scale," said SDA Director Giles Merritt.  "The Security Jam provided a forum for open debate and generated ideas that will provide both NATO and the EU significant food for thought at a moment when both institutions are looking for ways to tackle global security challenges within more cooperative frameworks."  

The recommendations came from on-line discussions led by top military officials and senior policy makers, including: Admiral James Stavridis, NATO's Supreme Allied Commander, Europe; General Hakan Syren, Chairman, EU Military Committee; Lieutenant General David Leakey, Director General, EU Military Staff; General Stephane Abrial, NATO's Supreme Allied Commander, Transformation; Kai Eide, UN Special Representative to Afghanistan; Josette Sheeran, Executive Director of the UN World Food Programme; Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, former NATO Secretary General; Anne-Marie Slaughter, Director of Policy Planning for the U.S. State Department; and Marc Perrin de Brichambaut, Secretary General, Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe.  

"The Security Jam opened the door to new thinking," said Robert Hunter, former U.S. Ambassador to NATO.  "It reached out to people who have truly original ideas and a range of analysis that goes to the heart of today's and tomorrow's security issues."

The Security Jam and the published recommendations are part of a joint initiative supported by NATO and the EU.  Organizers included the Security & Defence Agenda; Chatham House; the Atlantic Council; the Global Humanitarian Forum; the Open Society Foundation; Stockholm International Peace Research Institute; Carnegie Europe; Barcelona Centre for International Studies; the Fondation pour la Recherche Strategique;  Bertelsmann Stiftung; the Geneva Centre for Security Policy; and Friends of Europe.  IBM, the Munich Security Conference, and Europe's World collaborated on the initiative, which was supported by the governments of France, Sweden, and the United States, as well as by Thales.  

IBM provided Jam technology, advanced analytics and services to enable the global on-line discussions and extract findings.

"The goal of the Jam was to generate as many new ideas as possible and build on the creative synergies of many minds focused on a single topic," said Leendert van Bochoven, IBM's NATO and European Defence Leader. "The Security Jam brought together people from different backgrounds and with diverse global perspectives. It offered a unique way of having conversations and sharing ideas and experiences that can help make this a better, safer, more secure planet for us all."

Participants called on NATO, the EU and the organizers to make the Security Jam an annual event on the security policy debate agenda.

The full report on the Security Jam recommendations can be downloaded from:  http://www.securitydefenceagenda.org/Publications/tabid/592/Default.aspx.

About the Security & Defence Agenda

The Security & Defence Agenda (SDA) is the only Brussels-based security and defence think-tank.  Its activities span monthly roundtables, reports and discussion papers, international conferences and special press briefings and debates. It regularly brings together senior representatives from the EU institutions and NATO, with national government officials, industry, the international and specialised media, think-tanks, academia and NGOs.  Additional information is available at www.securitydefenceagenda.org.

About IBM

For more information about IBM and Smarter Government, please visit www.ibm.com/smarterplanet/government.  For information about IBM's defense solutions, please visit ibm.com/aerodefense.

Contact(s) information

Theo Chisholm
IBM Media Relations
(914) 765-6144
Mobile: (203) 550-8225
theoc@us.ibm.com

James Kevin Mac Goris
Security & Defence Agenda
+32 (0) 2 739 15 73
Mobile: +32 486 79 65 82
jameskevin.macgoris@securitydefenceagenda.org

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