• Last updated: 11 Apr. 2024 11:44

Science for Peace and Security

Key Priorities

Each activity supported by the SPS Programme addresses at least one of the SPS Key Priorities. 

In 2024, NATO Allies agreed on a revised list of thematic priorities for the SPS Programme, to maintain its focus on current and emerging security challenges that define NATO’s strategic environment. These new SPS Key Priorities are listed below, without any indication of priority.

  1. Environment, Climate Change and Security
    1. Understanding, mitigating and adapting to the impact of climate change on security, including military operations and missions;
    2. Increased awareness on security issues arising from key environmental and climate change challenges, including health risks, scarcity of resources, increasing energy needs, and space weather events;
    3. Approaches to reduce the environmental impact of military activities;
    4. Disaster forecast and prevention of climate-related natural catastrophes.
  2. Energy Security
    1. Dual-use innovative energy solutions; battlefield energy solutions; renewable energy solutions with dual-use applications;
    2. Energy infrastructure security, including technological aspects of energy security;
    3. Energy transition by design, i.e. transition from fossil fuels to innovative and more sustainable energy sources;
    4. Energy supply chain.
  3. Innovation and Emerging Disruptive Technologies (EDTs)
    1. Emerging technologies with the potential of having a profound impact on security, including:
      1. artificial intelligence (AI);
      2. autonomy;
      3. quantum;
      4. biotechnologies and human enhancement;
      5. space;
      6. novel materials and manufacturing;
      7. energy and propulsion;
      8. next-generation communications networks;
    2. Defence against adversarial use of EDTs;
    3. Advanced and novel technologies in the field of security.
  4. Counter-terrorism
    1. Detection technologies against the terrorist threat of explosive devices and other illicit activities;
    2. Solutions to Counter Improvised Explosive Devices (C-IED);
    3. Defence against terrorism misuse of technology, for example Countering Unmanned Aircraft Systems (C-UAS);
    4. Human factors in the defence against terrorism, including Preventing/Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE);
    5. Risk management, best practices and technologies in response to terrorism, including Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Defence.
  5. Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) and Explosive Hazards Management
    1. Mine and Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) detection;
    2. Methods and technology regarding the protection against, diagnosing effects, detection, decontamination, destruction, disposal and containment of CBRN Agents;
    3. Risk management and recovery strategies and technologies;
    4. Medical countermeasures against CBRN Agents.
  6. Defence against Hybrid Threats
    1. Technological solutions and approaches to prepare, deter and defend against the coercive use of political, energy, information and other hybrid tactics by states and non-state actors;
    2. Solutions and approaches to prepare, deter and defend against hybrid tactics, both directly and through proxies, as authoritarian actors challenge our interests, values and democratic way of life;
    3. Practical tools to monitor, analyse, raise awareness on, and counter disinformation, including through cooperation with technological industries and social media platforms, such as generative artificial intelligence and deep fakes;
    4. AI tools, including reverse image technology, to detect malicious information activities;
    5. Early warning tools to detect potential hybrid activities, including in the information space.
  7. Resilience
    1. Solutions to strengthen national preparedness;
    2. Crisis management and civil preparedness, including inter-agency coordination mechanisms;
    3. Digital resilience, including methods, procedures and technologies to ensure continuity of digital services during crises;
    4. Protection of critical infrastructure, supplies and personnel;
    5. Border and port security technologies.
  8. Critical Underwater Infrastructure
    1. Monitoring and protection of critical underwater infrastructure;
    2. Technology for the detection of threats on surface and underwater;
    3. Protection of harbours and infrastructures in shallow waters.
  9. Cyber Defence
    1. Technologies to ensure confidentiality, integrity and availability of communication networks;
    2. Support in developing cyber defence technologies and infrastructure;
    3. Best practices and information sharing;
    4. Cyber defence situational awareness;
    5. Cyber support to operations and missions.
  10. Assessing and addressing threats posed by the Russian Federation
    1. Approaches and tools to counter hostile information activities (including disinformation) against Allies and Partners;
    2. Identification of trends and lessons learned for hybrid threats emanating from the Russian Federation.
  11. Strategic Foresight
    1. Main trends in international security and associated implications;
    2. Regional strategies in the field of defence and security;
    3. Understanding of the future security environment;
    4. Early warning systems and indicators.
  12. Human and Social Aspects of Security
    1. Women, Peace and Security (WPS);
    2. Human Security;
    3. Cultural and social aspects in operations and missions.
  13. Operational Support
    1. Identifying and sharing best practices in operations and missions;
    2. Civilian support to operations and missions.
  14. Other
    1. Any other proposal clearly linked to the implementation of NATO’s core tasks may also be considered for funding under the SPS Programme.