QX0A6118 biconferencethumbNATO’s Joint Warfare Centre (JWC) hosted a two-day Building Integrity (BI) Introduction Seminar in Jatta, Stavanger, from January 17 to 18.

The seminar was conducted by a Mobile Training Team from the UK Defence Academy, featuring keynote speakers Ms Jacqueline Davies, the Senior Adviser, and British Army Lieutenant Colonel David Allen.

Participating in the seminar were also Ms Karolina MacLachlan, the Senior Research Officer at Transparency International UK and Lieutenant Colonel (Ret.) Peter Appleby from NATO’s Allied Rapid Reaction Corps (ARRC).

Welcoming the participating faculty to the Centre, Polish Army Major General Andrzej Reudowicz, Commander JWC, noted that the seminar’s main purpose was to create a better understanding of BI within the organization and also to mull over the implications of incorporating BI into the future JWC-led training events and exercises, especially following NATO’s endorsement of a BI Policy at the Warsaw Summit last year.

In her address, Davies discussed the importance of tackling the risk of corruption in defence and security sectors and how strengthening integrity massively impacted operational effectiveness, combat capability and public trust.

The briefings that followed focused on NATO BI Policy and the Action Plan and the role JWC might have on further developing and implementing BI in future NATO collective training and exercises.

On the second day of the seminar three syndicates were set up with cross-functional teams from varied JWC divisions, focusing on where BI could be incorporated into the complex security environments depicted in the training scenarios. Also discussed was how, as NATO’s premier warfare platform, JWC can help operationalize BI more as a mind-set rather than a potential sideline storyline in exercises and training events.

"I see that the lack of current doctrine is an opportunity rather than a challenge to what JWC can deliver."

Norwegian Army Lieutenant Colonel Joern Meringdal, JWC’s Transformation Delivery Subject Matter Expert who organized the seminar on behalf of JWC, said this was an important two-day training event.  

“I think the seminar was a success. It triggered the right attention from all the functional areas within the JWC,” Meringdal said, adding: “The participants were fully engaged with their knowledge and expertise across the spectrum. The seminar provided a great opportunity to discuss what would be most relevant to JWC's training framework regarding BI. We will carry on with the implementation of BI into future NATO exercises in a good and constructive way.”

Recognizing today’s volatile environment, Meringdal noted: “I think that this is one example how JWC can encourage its Training Audiences to go outside the box; beyond what is mandated, especially considering complex security challenges. BI has tentacles in all functional areas and concepts, including Comprehensive Approach, Strategic Communications and legal affairs, and this complexity alone demands our attention as we develop our training scenarios.”

When asked the way ahead and how lack of any NATO doctrine on BI might have an impact on exercises, Lieutenant Colonel Allen from the UK Defence Academy said: “Doctrine is really a compounding of experimentation and best practice, and in that sense, I think JWC is an ideal forum to actually trial and experiment on different approaches. So, I think JWC is particularly well placed to contribute to the development of doctrine. I see that the lack of current doctrine is an opportunity rather than a challenge to what JWC can deliver.”

The development of the NATO BI Policy was announced by the Heads of State and Government at the Warsaw Summit in June 2016.

A statement from the NATO's BI Policy said that the overarching aim was: “Building Integrity and the development of effective, transparent and accountable defence institutions which are responsive to unpredictable security challenges, including those of a hybrid nature, contribute significantly to the Alliance’s mission to safeguard the freedom and security of its members.”


Further Reading: Building Integrity Annual Discipline Conference, September 2016

Photos from the Building Integrity (BI) Introduction Seminar, 17-18 January 2017

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Don't forget to check JWC's Facebook page for more pictures