Landscaping cyber defence capabilities in Europe

European Union map made out of binary code

Mopic/Adobe Stock


Cyber threats and cyber-enabled attacks are becoming increasingly frequent and sophisticated. As a result of this, the European Union (EU) needs to develop its capabilities and resilience in both the cyber security and cyber defence areas, where possible in close coordination with key partners — internal and external to the Union.

In 2011, the European Defence Agency (EDA) commissioned a cyber defence landscaping study to take stock of existing cyber defence capabilities in participating member states (pMS), as well as EU institutions, bodies and agencies. The results and recommendations of this study informed the EDA cyber defence programme and wider EU cyber defence initiatives and efforts between 2012 and 2017.


The EDA contracted RAND Europe to conduct an update landscaping study of military cyber defence capabilities in the EU. The study aims to provide a holistic, multi-dimensional, mid- to long-term perspective of European cyber defence capabilities, augmenting the EU Cyber Defence Policy Framework reporting with a comprehensive and full spectrum view of cyber defence capabilities.

The research will:

  1. Assess the current landscape of cyber defence capabilities at EU and pMS levels, including an assessment of EDA and EU project and activities completed since 2012.
  2. Review progress made in the development of cyber defence capabilities.
  3. Provide recommendations for developing and adjusting cyber defence policies and actions at EU and pMS levels over the short and medium term.


The project will employ a mixed methodology approach to:

  1. Assess the current policy framework and institutional landscape of European cyber defence.
  2. Review and update the stocktaking methodology employed in the 2012 study.
  3. Collect and evaluate data on current and planned cyber defence capabilities in EDA pMS and EU institutions.
  4. Develop and refine recommendations for future EDA and EU cyber defence activities.