New Dutch CyberSecurity Research and Education Platform

November 3, 2015

In his opening speech of the NCSRA Symposium 2015, Dick Schoof, National Coordinator for Security and Counterterrorism of the Ministry of Security and Justice, officially announced the launch of a new platform for Cyber Security Research & Education (CSRE). Dick, on behalf of State Secretary Klaas Dijkhoff, referred to the Dutch Cyber Security Strategy (NCSS2), where the CSRE Platform is mentioned as an important means to fulfil the goal to guarantee the necessary knowledge, skills and innovation in cybersecurity. In this platform entrepreneurs, students, lecturers, scientists and government agencies will be able to join forces under the auspices of the Dutch research council NWO.

Dick Schoof and Jan Piet Barthel with the rocket, representing the platform to be launched!
(Photo: Sjoerd van der Hucht)

The actual launch, early 2016, will be prepared by Jan Piet Barthel, currently Program Manager Cybersecurity Research at NWO (Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research) and recently appointed head of this platform. Therefore Dick presented Jan Piet, in his “head of space mission” role, a miniature rocket with the task to organize a perfect launch, with the help of rocket scientists, astronauts and ground personnel. Founding fathers of this platform are the Ministry of Security and Justice, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sciences and NWO.

Jan Piet Barthel interviewed by Elly van den Heuvel, Secretary Dutch Cyber Security Council
(Photo: Sjoerd van der Hucht)

In the afternoon session of the NCSRA-Symposium Elly van den Heuvel, secretary of the Dutch Cyber Security Council asked Jan Piet a couple of questions about his new role:

1. What is main objective of the new platform?
Jan Piet: Maintain and intensify the connections between the stakeholders in the cybersecurity domain and in the knowledge chain. Together we will set up bottom up agenda’s for cybersecurity research and education, and organise events like this, matchmaking events, round table sessions, etc.
In the education area we made a modest start by creating a current and transparent overview of higher education cybersecurity curricula on the website of the ICT Innovation Platform on security and privacy (IIP-VV)
The Cybersecurity Council is recommending us to join forces with the Human Capital Agenda ICT and with the Platform 2032 in the area of cybersecurity education. We are already working along these lines.

2. How is your relationship with NWO?
Jan Piet: NWO is my formal employer. NWO has given me on loan to the new platform, and by doing so NWO is demonstrating their commitment to the objective behind the platform.

3. What will the organization look like, could you give a perspective, and also let us know what your first activities will be?
Jan Piet: To me it is extremely important to rely on an advisory council representing the full breadth of the cybersecurity field. Therefore the formation of such a council is a high priority. Furthermore I will write a multi-annual plan for the platform and would like to get this authorized in the first quarter of 2016 by our founding fathers. The organization itself, focusing on cybersecurity research, development & education, will be lean and mean, and will consist, other than an advisory council representing public-private partnerships, of a core team and a flexible shell.

4. Are you going to do this on your own, or is it your intention to get involvement from others?
Jan Piet: Organising this launch requires the involvement of lots of people. In a tour d ’horizon I will consult many representatives of the cybersecurity field. In particular I would like to continue the consultation of current board members of the ICT Innovation Platform IIP-VV.

To maintain a warm bond with the IIP-VV board members, especially during the cold winter that is about to start, and before the actual launch of the new platform, Jan Piet handed over nice shawls to the board members present at the symposium.

IIP-VV boardmembers with their shawls, helping them (and Jan Piet) through a cold Dutch winter
(Photo: Sjoerd van der Hucht)


About IIP-VV

The Dutch IIP-VV unites researchers from industry and academia, users as well as representatives from government in the Netherlands in the area of ICT security and privacy.