Canadian Safety And Security Program — Backgrounder

The Cana­di­an Safe­ty and Secu­ri­ty Pro­gram (CSSP) is a fed­er­al­ly-fund­ed pro­gram, to strength­en Canada’s abil­i­ty to antic­i­pate, pre­vent, mit­i­gate, pre­pare for, respond to, and recov­er from nat­ur­al dis­as­ters, seri­ous acci­dents, crime and ter­ror­ism through the con­ver­gence of sci­ence and tech­nol­o­gy (S&T) with pol­i­cy, oper­a­tions and intel­li­gence. On behalf of the Gov­ern­ment of Cana­da, the CSSP is led by Defence Research and Devel­op­ment Canada’s Cen­tre for Secu­ri­ty Sci­ence (DRDC CSS), in part­ner­ship with response and emer­gency man­age­ment orga­ni­za­tions, non-gov­ern­men­tal agen­cies, indus­try, acad­e­mia as well as provin­cial and munic­i­pal gov­ern­ments.

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The new pro­gram, which has been allo­cat­ed $43.5 mil­lion dol­lars annu­al­ly, builds on the suc­cess­es, lessons learned and best prac­tices of DRDC CSS’s three for­mer pro­grams:

  • The Chem­i­cal, Bio­log­i­cal, Radi­o­log­i­cal-Nuclear and Explo­sives Research and Tech­nol­o­gy Ini­tia­tive, which focused on chem­i­cal, bio­log­i­cal, radi­o­log­i­cal-nuclear and explo­sives (CBRNE) counter-ter­ror­ism;
  • The Pub­lic Secu­ri­ty Tech­ni­cal Pro­gram, which expand­ed S&T efforts beyond CBRNE into oth­er areas like crit­i­cal infra­struc­ture pro­tec­tion, cyber-secu­ri­ty, sur­veil­lance, intel­li­gence, inter­dic­tion, bor­der secu­ri­ty, emer­gency man­age­ment sys­tems and inter­op­er­abil­i­ty; and
  • The Cana­di­an Police Research Cen­tre, which focused on har­ness­ing S&T for the ben­e­fit of police and oth­er first respon­ders across Cana­da.

The inte­gra­tion of these efforts under one com­pre­hen­sive pro­gram allows invest­ments to be dis­trib­uted more effec­tive­ly across the dif­fer­ent domains. It also enables DRDC to stream­line admin­is­tra­tive process­es and enhance align­ment with Gov­ern­ment of Cana­da pri­or­i­ties.

A Col­lab­o­ra­tive Mod­el

Through projects, stud­ies, exer­cis­es, work­shops and oth­er activ­i­ties, the CSSP cre­ates oppor­tu­ni­ties, for experts to work with var­i­ous part­ners from dif­fer­ent pub­lic safe­ty and nation­al secu­ri­ty fields to sup­port the devel­op­ment of knowl­edge, tools, process­es and strate­gies that are essen­tial for safe­guard­ing Cana­da, its peo­ple, insti­tu­tions, and infra­struc­ture. This col­lab­o­ra­tive mod­el ensures that the best minds from gov­ern­ment, indus­try, acad­e­mia and inter­na­tion­al orga­ni­za­tions work on the most press­ing safe­ty and secu­ri­ty issues fac­ing Cana­di­ans.

Mak­ing Invest­ments to Achieve Strate­gic Objec­tives

CSSP fund­ing will sup­port projects and activ­i­ties that respond to Cana­di­an pub­lic safe­ty and secu­ri­ty pri­or­i­ties and address capa­bil­i­ty gaps. These gaps are iden­ti­fied through risk and vul­ner­a­bil­i­ty assess­ments, con­sul­ta­tion with com­mu­ni­ties of prac­tice, as well as with cen­tral agen­cies, and pol­i­cy, oper­a­tional and intel­li­gence enti­ties.

Ulti­mate­ly, invest­ments must con­tribute to achiev­ing the program’s pri­ma­ry goal of ensur­ing that Cana­di­ans and their insti­tu­tions have a greater resilience to glob­al and domes­tic pub­lic safe­ty and secu­ri­ty threats. These efforts are guid­ed by a set of long-term goals: a secure and effi­cient flow of peo­ple, goods, and ser­vices across Cana­di­an bor­ders and ports of entry; a con­nect­ed and mul­ti-juris­dic­tion­al secu­ri­ty, intel­li­gence and nation­al emer­gency man­age­ment sys­tem; and pub­lic con­fi­dence that haz­ards are being iden­ti­fied, assessed and addressed in a way that respects Cana­di­an val­ues.

Invest­ment Cat­e­gories

The CSSP is exe­cut­ed through three sep­a­rate invest­ment cat­e­gories which pro­vide fund­ing for nine types of S&T projects.

  • An annu­al com­pet­i­tive Call for Pro­pos­als requests sub­mis­sions for inno­v­a­tive project pro­pos­als that address iden­ti­fied pub­lic safe­ty and secu­ri­ty capa­bil­i­ty gaps.
  • Tar­get­ed Invest­ments allow DRDC CSS to direct­ly fund projects and activ­i­ties that tack­le crit­i­cal gaps not being ade­quate­ly addressed through the Call for Pro­pos­als or oth­er means.
  • Com­mu­ni­ty Devel­op­ment sup­ports the activ­i­ties of com­mu­ni­ties of prac­tice. These com­mu­ni­ties are groups of experts from dif­fer­ent orga­ni­za­tions who work togeth­er to dis­cuss risks and vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties, iden­ti­fy capa­bil­i­ty gaps, and devel­op pro­pos­als to address these chal­lenges.

Projects Types

  • Stud­ies use evi­dence-based exam­i­na­tions or analy­ses to address known pub­lic safe­ty and secu­ri­ty issues, and define prob­lems and/or solu­tions.
  • Research and Devel­op­ment projects involve applied research that will gen­er­ate new knowl­edge or aware­ness while address­ing user-defined capa­bil­i­ty gaps.
  • Tech­nol­o­gy Demon­stra­tions advance the matu­ri­ty of tech­nolo­gies, appli­ca­tions or capa­bil­i­ties by embed­ding S&T in an oper­a­tional con­text. This allows DRDC and its part­ners to work direct­ly with the oper­a­tional com­mu­ni­ty.
  • Work­shops pro­vide a forum for stake­hold­ers to share their knowl­edge and expe­ri­ence, as well as iden­ti­fy and devel­op solu­tions to pub­lic safe­ty and secu­ri­ty chal­lenges.
  • Advice and Guid­ance projects allow stake­hold­ers to pro­vide evi­dence-based analy­sis in the sup­port of pol­i­cy devel­op­ment, plan­ning and deci­sion-mak­ing.
  • Tech­nol­o­gy Acqui­si­tion projects are con­cerned with the strate­gic acqui­si­tion of tech­nolo­gies to enhance spe­cif­ic capa­bil­i­ties.
  • S&T Tran­si­tion projects inte­grate tech­nol­o­gy with­in exist­ing sys­tems of peo­ple, tools, and process­es, or capa­bil­i­ties, to facil­i­tate tran­si­tion from the lab into the hands of the emer­gency respon­der com­mu­ni­ty.
  • Oper­a­tional Sup­port through S&T projects enable Canada’s emer­gency man­agers, respon­ders and secu­ri­ty author­i­ties through the time­ly access to sci­en­tif­ic and tech­no­log­i­cal exper­tise to sup­port plan­ning, oper­a­tions and exer­cis­es.
  • Oper­a­tional Sup­port through Test­ing and Eval­u­a­tion projects assist police, fire, emer­gency med­ical ser­vices and oth­er stake­hold­ers by assess­ing the per­for­mance of tech­nolo­gies and process­es in sim­u­lat­ed or oper­a­tional set­tings. This type of project will be man­aged pri­mar­i­ly through the Emer­gency Respon­der Test and Eval­u­a­tion Estab­lish­ment.

Emer­gency Respon­der Test and Eval­u­a­tion Estab­lish­ment

Part of the pro­gram fund­ing has also been allo­cat­ed with­in this invest­ment, to stand-up the DRDC Emer­gency Respon­der Test and Eval­u­a­tion Estab­lish­ment (ERTEE) in Regi­na.

ERTEE will pri­mar­i­ly be respon­si­ble for deliv­er­ing the test­ing and eval­u­a­tion com­po­nent of the CSSP, focus­ing on sup­port­ing the emer­gency respon­der com­mu­ni­ty across Cana­da, but also address­ing the needs of the broad­er pub­lic safe­ty and secu­ri­ty com­mu­ni­ty. ERTEE will work with users, uni­ver­si­ties and indus­try part­ners to put in place col­lab­o­ra­tive projects to test and eval­u­ate poten­tial tech­nolo­gies. This includes assess­ing the effec­tive­ness and poten­tial lim­its of the tech­nolo­gies, as well as look­ing at asso­ci­at­ed stan­dards, process­es and method­olo­gies.

Depart­ment of Nation­al Defence, Cana­da