The Western Balkan Security and Defence College and its benefits for the region

Lívia Benko, Michael Zinkanell: The Western Balkan Security and Defence College and its benefits for the region, AIES Studies 2/2023



This study explores the benefits of the proposal developed by the Central European Defence Cooperation (CEDC) to establish a Western Balkan Security and Defence College (WBSDC), for the partners within the region as well as the European Union at large. The analysis advises that establishing and operating a College focussed on security and defence for military, civilian, and diplomatic staff would greatly enhance the capacity building in the participating partner countries while contributing to overcoming historical grievances.

Through pooling resources and drawing on best practices from pre-existing similar institutions such as the Baltic Defence College, benefits in both the quality and efficiency of education can be realised. In turn, this would also provide partners with limited resources with the necessary tools to contribute more effectively and sustainably to regional as well as European security and stability. A College of this nature could thus serve as a stepping stone towards transforming the Western Balkans region from a recipient of security measures to a contributor to the European security architecture. Additionally, the College has the potential to uniting of the relevant personnel within the same educational facility, contribute to the development of a common strategic culture and understanding of security policy in the long-term, and supporting partners to addressing and solving multiple challenges related to security and defence.

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