Utrecht – From 14-16 November, the Director of NATO Command and Control Centre of Excellence (NATO C2COE), CAPT (NLD N) Renée van Pamelen-Hollenberg and LtCol (NLD N MC) Frank Gubbels Section Head Expertise Management Branch, participated in the annual International Concept Development & Experimentation (CD&E) Conference. The Crisis Management and Disaster Response Centre of Excellence (CMDRCOE) in Sofia, supported this event on behalf of the host nation Bulgaria.
Our participation in this high-visibility event showed the NATO C2COE commitment to NATO CD&E. These Transformational activities constitute a considerable part of the annual Program of Work (POW). CD&E is one of the four so called Pillars of Support any COE can be active in. Furthermore the presence with the Director and a section head in sessions with influential speakers and the active participation in interesting workshops, offered the opportunity to gain more insights on the (future) environment in which the C2 of NATO units has to perform. Many Warsaw Summit topics (i.e. Protection of Civilians, Building Resilience, Hybrid Warfare) and future trends were addressed. Some ongoing and potential projects of the Allied Command Transformation were presented and after fruitful discussions refined. Lastly the conference facilitated our networking in order to increase the individual and collective effectiveness of the NATO C2COE.
The specific well-organised event which was co-hosted by HQ ACT and US Joint Staff, brought together over 220 representatives from many nations, also non-partner nations, COEs, international organisations such as International Committee of the Red Cross, United Nations and European Union, from both its Military Staff and the Commission.
From the Bulgarian side, the Conference was opened by General Popov (BGR AF), the Bulgarian Chief of Defence Staff. Furthermore former Minister of Defence and current Director of the Bulgarian Defence Institute Professor Tagarev provided the Keynote Address.
Admiral Nielson (GER N), Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Transformation represented SACT with his welcoming address. Brigadier General Sommer (DNK A), Assistant Chief Of Staff Capability Engineering and Innovation ACT mentioned the role COEs have to play in unlocking the mind-set, thinking differently, identifying and using opportunities for innovation. Brigadier General Bauman (USA AF), Deputy Director Future Joint Force Development in his welcome address lightly touched upon the theme of one of the seminars: how to apply a whole government approach to campaigning? One of the topics our 2017 Command and Control seminar in Valencia from 13 till 15 June will deal with.