New report: In the Eye of the Beholder? An Assessment of Global Security Perceptions

January 14th 2020 - 12:00

New report out now! To read, click here.

How does the Dutch perception of its security threats compare to the outlook of other states? It’s all in the eye of the beholder…

All countries have procedures and – in some cases – methodologies to identify, analyze and prioritize threats to their national security. The outcome of these efforts is typically one or more high-level documents in which the responsible national security bodies provide authoritative statements on threats facing the country. As part of the Dutch Strategic Monitor effort, HCSS was asked to take a closer look at how other actors perceive their threat environments and to what extent they might differ from their Dutch equivalents.

This study sets out to address the following research questions:

1.            What similarities and differences exist between the Netherlands’ and other actors’ perceptions of interstate military competition (IMC), conflict in cyberspace, hybrid conflict and economic security, CBRN weapons, and terrorism – all central threats in the Dutch Geïntegreerde Buitenland -en Veiligheidsstrategie (GBVS) and National Security Strategy (NSS) 2019?

2.            How do other actors interpret trends relating to the rules-based (liberal) international order?

3.            What threats do other actors afford central positions which the Netherlands does not?

4.            Do other actors identify opportunities for the future?

We have analyzed a long-list of identified threats – and countries’ perceptions thereof – in order to provide insights with the potential of challenging preconceptions underpinning the Dutch threat perception framework.

Follow this link to read the report by Hugo van Manen.


Disclaimer: The research for and production of this report has been conducted within the PROGRESS research framework agreement. Responsibility for the contents and for the opinions expressed, rests solely with the authors and does not constitute, nor should it be construed as, an endorsement by the Netherlands Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defense. 

Hugo van Manen holds a Master’s degree (MSc) in International Public Management and Policy from the Erasmus University in Rotterdam and a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies from Leiden University. Prior to joining HCSS, Hugo worked as a consultant at Ecorys, where he was involved in several EU-commissioned projects within the field of civil protection, including the International Forum to Advance First Responder Innovation, DRIVER+, and DG ECHO’s peer review program.