On June 25-26, 2024, the BAG-INTEL Project Coordinator and the project’s communication and dissemination lead attended the Projects to Policy Seminar organized in Brussels, Belgium in the framework of the Community for European Research and Innovation for Security (CERIS).


Every year, the European Research Executive Agency (REA) and the Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs (DG HOME) organize the Projects to Policy Seminar. This in-person, by invitation only event gathers the key representatives of the newly launched projects and it is structured into thematic breakout sessions, preceded by a plenary session with several presentations of general interest. The aim of the event is to raise awareness among the relevant policy Directorates-General on the newly launched projects and provide guidance to the new projects regarding policy-related outputs the Directorates-General are interested in.

The 2024 edition

2024 Projects to Policy Seminar - panel/opening
Panel and audience at the Projects to Policy Seminar – Image courtesy of CERIS Events

The seminar was opened by Marta Cygan, Director for Innovation & Audit, DG HOME and Minna Wilkki, Head of Department Future Society, REA who stressed the importance of two-way communication between the projects and EU agencies, including Europol, Frontex, CEPOL, eu-LISA, and EUDA. The speakers highlighted the need of tranfering the operational experience and data from projects to EU agencies for better accommodation and use of project results by the agencies and more strategic adjustments to funding programs. They introduced the seminar as a great opportunity for projects to understand and discuss the policy needs but also network, boost knowledge exchange, and create synergies between projects and programs.

During parts of the event, the participants met in groups split into four thematic areas: Fighting Crime and Terrorism & Critical Infrastructure, Strengthened Security Research and Innovation, Disaster-Resilient Societies, and Border Management for more targeted and insightful discussions. BAG-INTEL was naturally part of the Border Management group.

The event featured various informative sessions and panel discussions, covering several topics, including but not limited to:

  • communication, dissemination and exploitation in security research,
  • EU Agencies’ Innovation Laboratories and research activities,
  • the new EU AI Act and its effects on security R&I,
  • projects’ cooperation with national authorities and end-users,

as well as several breakout sessions spanning different thematic areas, such as data management and the use of Artificial intelligence; surveillance, awareness, and threat detection; preparedness, society, and privacy; and innovative technological solutions, with points for discussion covering challenges, the role of practitioners within projects, and plans and strategies for uptake of results.

BAG-INTEL project Coordinator Henrik Larsen presenting at Projects to Policy Seminar 2024
BAG-INTEL Project Coordinator Henrik Larsen (Legind Technologies A/S) presenting at the event – Image courtesy of CERIS Events

During the seminar, the participants had a chance to present their projects. BAG-INTEL’s presentation was kicked off with a display of the newly released animated project overview video, followed by an introduction to the project’s operational scenario, BAG-INTEL features and capabilities, and an explanation of how the project intends to advance beyond the state-of-the-art. The presentation generated significant interest among the participants leading to several follow-up discussions.

Image © BAG-INTEL 2024

The seminar was a great success. It fostered a very direct and honest contact between the two groups and helped the EC anticipate the impact that would be generated by the newly launched projects. The key takeaways from the discussions held during the event include:

  • Honest and open communication among the project partners, including the end users should start early on, ideally at the proposal preparation stage.
  • The involvement of practitioners in every stage of the project is of utmost importance.
  • Individual projects might struggle to build a critical mass and should therefore create synergies with related projects for maximized outreach and visibility.
  • Synergies between projects should go a step further – their practitioners should actively monitor the progress of related projects, share their know-how, and exchange ideas to close potential research gaps and boost the potential of the results’ uptake.

Except when otherwise specified, all images used for this article courtesy of CERIS Events.