NORDLAB and the Nord University Business School hosts second workshop on hybrid threats

NORDLAB, the preparedness laboratory of the Nord University Business School, recently hosted the second Hybrid Threat Workshop at Campus Bodø. Since the workshop was last organized in Oslo, October 2021, the list of national and international contributors to the research consortium has grown, adding valuable input to the complex matter of hybrid threat research.

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The aim of the workshop, which lasted from June 1st to June 2nd, was to shed light on hybrid threats in a regional response perspective, and how they may impact the society in different sectors. One of the main themes was how to understand and study the ambiguous nature of hybrid threats. Day one of the workshop featured an array of highly relevant presentations, covering the hybrid threat picture, intelligence and situational awareness, as well as hybrid threats and vulnerability:

  • Geopolitical challenges and war – from hybrid threats towards warfare

Professor Tormod Heier from the Norwegian Defense University College

  • Hybrid threats and information as a military strategic tool

    Senior researcher Marte Høiby, leader of Hybrid Threats division, SINTEF Digital
  • Undermining democracy and political trust at local and national levels

    Associate professor Tanja Ellingsen, Nord University
  • Hybrid threats and cyber operations

    Senior researcher Torbjørn Kveberg, The Norwegian Defense Research Establishment
  • Detection of hybrid threats – joint efforts towards situational awareness at regional and national level

Professor Odd Jarl Borch, NORDLAB, Nord University, Chair Societal Safety and Security, UArctic

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Researcher Julie Bergaust from the Norwegian Defense Research Establishment giving her presentation on morphological analysis of hybrid warfare and its significance for Norwegian security Photo: NORDLAB​

  • Morphological analysis of hybrid interference: Significance for Norwegian security

Researcher Julie Bergaust, The Norwegian Defense Research Establishment

  • Towards detecting hybrid threats: social media, data collection and analysis

    Researcher Jannicke Fiskvik, SINTEF Digital
  •  Understanding vulnerability

    Senior researcher Katarina Klingova, GLOBESEC
  • Learning about the unknown – creating knowledge about hybrid threats

    Associate professor Per Haavardtun, The University of South-Eastern Norway
  • Risk and vulnerability analysis at a regional level – a county governor perspective

Head of civil protection and emergency preparedness Asgeir Jordbru, The County Governor of Nordland

Day two shifted the attention towards responding to hybrid threats:

  • Responding to hybrid threats through international cooperation

Senior Analyst Maxime Lebrun, Hybrid COE – The European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats

  • Disasters and hybrid threats – mobilization of the total defense resources

    Director Ørjan Nordhuus Karlsson, The Norwegian Directorate for Civil Protection
  • Civilian-military collaboration and a total defense perspective on hybrid threat response

Commander Geir Egil Kalkvik, Ministry of Defense

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Professor Mass Soldal from Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences giving his presentation on challenges in the cyber domain. Photo: NORDLAB​.

Professor Mass Soldal from Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences giving his presentation on challenges in the cyber domain. Photo: NORDLAB

  • Challenges in the cyber domain – organizations to face hybrid threats

Professor Mass Soldal, Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences


Hedda Langemyr, Managing director of UTSYN, brought the first part of the program to a close, leading a panel discussion on inter-organizational cooperation on hybrid threat response.

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Hedda Langemyr. Photo: NORDLAB.

The workshop was concluded with a writing seminar, outlining the plans of applying to Horizon Europe – The European Union's framework programme for research and innovation. As a part of the seminar, round table discussions centered around the project's main strengths, focus areas as well as prospective work packages. Rounding off the discussion, Professor Tormod Heier presented a book outline on hybrid threats to be edited by Tormod Heier and Odd Jarl Borch. This book will include contribution both from academia and from practitioners.​

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“Preparedness towards hybrid threats is a leaders responsibility. It is about knowledge and understanding. Leaders must lead from the front as role models for their employees. Not the least to build a culture where knowledge of the hybrid threat picture is highlighted as a central aspect of the organization – down to the single man and woman in the Norwegian municipalities, as well as the public sector" – Professor Tormod Heier, Norwegian Defense University College. Photo: NORDLAB​