GARMISCH-PARTENKIRCHEN, Germany (Sept. 11, 2013) – Security and defense professionals representing five Defense Department combatant commands from 44 countries have gathered here to share ideas about global shift of power from emerging economic titans to transnational companies.
The Senior Executive Seminar titled “The Global Shift of Power: Challenges, Opportunities and Security Implications for the U.S., Europe, and the World” got underway Sept. 9 at the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies. The event gathers 75 ministers, parliamentarians, general officers and other senior leaders from around the world.
Italian air force Brig. Gen. Salva Gagliano, SES executive director, said a lot has gone into making this seminar come together.
“We are identifying and prioritizing together, taking into account our different cultural perspectives, the key issues that influence national, regional and international security and shape common security strategies in an interdependent and networked world,” Gagliano said.
With 14 lecturers in five days, it’s not a straight seminar format but more of a “pick and choose,” Gagliano said. “SES is going to be very comprehensive in a compact time frame.”
"We are witnessing a new global shift of power - new actors emerge, state and non-state, who use new forms of power,” Gagliano said. “Some forms of power exerted by unconventional actors are feeding illicit networks and transnational crime in our globalized and technological world through a process known as 'convergence.' And cyber warfare is a nascent threat with tremendous future capability.” They won’t work alone. Helping them barrel toward success are members of the International Senior Enlisted Seminar, with senior enlisted leaders from 32 nations working alongside the SES participants. The Marshall Center, a joint DOD and German Ministry of Defense partnership, conducts three Senior Executive Seminars each year. The topic of the seminar in January 2014 is “Emerging Threats.”
Gagliano said that this SES has incorporated the use of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency’s GlobalNET website and that some participants have already used it to begin discussing the seminar themes in advance of their arrival. GlobalNET is a website that represents a network of regional centers across the globe and their representative members who are working to foster national and international collaboration as well as to maintain relationships, and strengthen partner capacity.
“Our hope is that they'll continue to use GlobalNET to maintain contact with each other and the Marshall Center after their departure.” Gagliano said.
Gagliano said SES participants will return home with a deeper awareness of key issues that influence national, regional and international security, the factors that shape security strategy, and the components of cooperative security in an interdependent world.