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Laurea’s EU CyberSecPro Project with 27 Partners Sparks Dynamic Dialogue on Cybersecurity Training, Education and Collaboration in Brussels

Laurea along with 27 partners in CyberSecPro EU project continues its impactful development work.

Laurea along with 27 partners in CyberSecPro EU project continues its impactful development work with a recent general assembly in January 2024 at Brussels. The CyberSecPro general assembly consisted of a partners' general project meeting and a lively panel discussion focused on cybersecurity training and awareness. The event, hosted at the esteemed Representation of the State of Hessen to the EU, featured a lineup of distinguished speakers and experts that assembled a large audience. More than 80 people participated in the event, which stimulated discussion on European cybersecurity, the European Competence Centre, and its impact on European society.

The panel, expertly moderated by Kai Rannenberg (Chair of Mobile Business & Multilateral Security and Professor at Goethe University Frankfurt), boasted an impressive roster of speakers, including:

  • Katarzyna Prusak-Górniak, Deputy Chair of the European Cybersecurity Competence Centre Governing Board and Head of Digital Affairs Unit in the Permanent Representation of Poland to the EU
  • Tamara Tafra, Minister Counsellor for Cyber Issues, Hybrid Threats & Disinformation at PermRep of Croatia to the EU
  • Panagiotis Marzelas, European Security and Defence College
  • Arnaud de Vibraye, Junior Manager for Skills and Human Factors, European CyberSecurity Organisation
  • Punit Bhatia, ISACA, Board Member, DPO & Director – Education Events
  • Nineta Polemi, Professor, Cybersecurity Research Lab, University of Piraeus
  • Paresh Rathod, Thematic Leader (Cyber RDI), Laurea, Finland

Together, they explored the critical importance of robust and continuous cybersecurity training programs, addressing challenges encountered in both the business and private sectors.

In attendance was Luca Tagliaretti, Executive Director of the European Cybersecurity Competence Centre (ECCC), adding a notable presence and highlighting the commitment to collective efforts in advancing European cybersecurity initiatives.

Throughout the evening, key takeaways emphasized the need to develop critical thinkers, moving beyond being mere consumers of information. The call to "connect the dots" resonated, urging a holistic understanding of cybersecurity, privacy, AI, and compliance.

The panelists stressed the urgency of creating awareness early and proposed a novel approach of university students training and guiding elders on cybersecurity. As discussions unfolded, the consensus was that this event marks just the beginning of a collective effort with a long road ahead. Further, the importance of addressing the manpower shortage in cybersecurity was underscored, with a suggestion to leverage European Cybersecurity Competence Center and National Cybersecurity Competence Center as allies in solving this challenge. Importantly, the discussions encouraged a shift in focus from experts alone to engaging everyone, from students to citizens.

- Laurea cybersecurity experts and team continues to contribute to the CyberSecPro innovative initiatives focuses on cybersecurity education and collaboration with our partners that ultimately benefits our students’ skills and their working-life competence building, said by Laurea’s expert Paresh Rathod who contributes in diverse roles on behalf of Laurea and Finland including CyberSecPro project manager, senior lecturer, cyber RDI thematic leader, co-chair of European Cybersecurity Organisation WG (ECSO, Brussels) and EU cyber expert in EU cybersecurity agency (ENISA, Athens).

About CyberSecPro project 

CyberSecPro remains dedicated to propelling progress in the cybersecurity landscape through education and collaborative initiatives. We anticipate ongoing updates on our commitment to fostering a more secure digital environment. 15 HEIs and 13 companies from 16 countries are working on an agile, collaborative, and multi-modal training program that will complement, support, and advance the existing academic programs by linking innovation, research, industry, academia, and SME support.

CyberSecPro aims to bridge the gap between degrees, working life, and marketable cybersecurity skill sets necessary in today's digitalization efforts and provide examples of best practices for cybersecurity training programs.

CyberSecPro's ambition is to enhance the role of the Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) in offering hands-on and working-life skills for driving a trustworthy digital transformation in critical sectors of the economy.


Original article: CyberSecPro project by Jeldo Meppen (ACEEU, Germany) and Paresh Rathod (Laurea, Finland)

Image: CyberSecPro project by Jeldo Meppen

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