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NSD-S Hub Publications

The NSD-S HUB was established at Allied Joint Force Command Naples in order to improve NATO awareness and understanding of common global challenges in the area of interest and to identify opportunities for cooperation with selected Partners, while contributing to the overall coordination of NATO activities and efforts. NSD-S HUB products are developed with open-source information from regional actors and experts, governmental organizations, non-governmental organizations, international organizations, academic institutions, media sources and military organizations. By design, NSD-S HUB products or links to open-sourced and independently produced articles do not necessarily represent the opinions, views or official positions of any other organization.

WEBINAR: Gulf of Guinea Improving Maritime Security

WEBINAR: Gulf of Guinea Improving Maritime Security

Mar 1, 2021

The Gulf of Guinea (GoG) is an important geopolitical chokepoint for the shipping and transportation of oil extracted in the Niger delta, as well as for goods to and from central and southern Africa. Piracy, armed robbery at sea, illegal fishing, smuggling, and trafficking, pose a significant threat to maritime security in the GoG, and ultimately to the economic development of the entire region.


Counter-Terrorism - Best Practices in North Africa and the Sahel

Counter-Terrorism - Best Practices in North Africa and the Sahel

Feb 22, 2021

NATO Strategic Direction-South Hub (“the Hub”) hosted a live online Webinar on 24 November, 2020 at which it engaged and learnt from African experts sharing regional experience and audience comments. The discussion examined the root causes of terrorism and radicalization, the challenges of dealing with them at domestic and regional levels and the best practices in the region.


The Challenge of the Youth Bulge in Africa and the Middle East - Migration and The Brain Drain

The Challenge of the Youth Bulge in Africa and the Middle East - Migration and The Brain Drain

Feb 8, 2021

By 2050, the population of Africa is expected to double, the proportion of people in their working age is projected to increase sharply and a “youth bulge”, namely a relatively large increase in the number and proportion of the population of youthful age, is rapidly forming beneath looming economic uncertainties.


Terrorism in the Sahel: 4 Important Trends

Terrorism in the Sahel: 4 Important Trends

Jan 19, 2021

Phase two of this joint Hub/ACSRT project shows how Terrorist and Violent Extremist Organizations (TVEO) activity is spreading in complexity and geographically from the SAHEL towards the south despite collaborative counter-terrorism efforts.


WEBINAR: How do emerging and disruptive technologies shape the security agenda in the South?

WEBINAR: How do emerging and disruptive technologies shape the security agenda in the South?

Jan 15, 2021

Technological innovation and digital transformations brought the possibility of improving and change significantly the human condition in a short lap of time. It is expected that the near future will be marked by learning machines, artificial intelligence, edited genomes, autonomous systems , virtual stateless currencies, and private space travel. All this represents an incredible potential for human welfare. Nevertheless, these emerging and disruptive technologies represent also enormous challenges as well to nations and individuals.


Drivers of Radicalisation in the Sahel

Drivers of Radicalisation in the Sahel

Nov 30, 2020

Understanding the intricacies of radicalisation and the complex relationships between it and civilian populations is certainly necessary for the development of a comprehensive approach to it. The question of the role of religion in the radicalisation process is integral to this development, and therefore directly relevant to new and/or improved Preventing/Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE) measures. And the answer is perhaps not as clear as you might think.


5 recommendations for stemming the flow of Small Arms & Light Weapons

5 recommendations for stemming the flow of Small Arms & Light Weapons

Nov 26, 2020

As NATO is committed to addressing the flow of illicit small arms and light weapons (SALW) through legal and technical means and also via cultural, societal and functional methods, the Hub has collaborated with experts from across North and Sub-Saharan Africa to gain greater insight into this issue. In our discussions, 5 recommendations were identified.


Terrorism in the Sahel: facts and figures

Terrorism in the Sahel: facts and figures

Sep 9, 2020

This document is intended to be the first of many tri-annual reports whose purpose will be to provide a more comprehensive vision of trends in terrorism across the region by way of progressive analyses, in order to create a broader and more nuanced understanding of the dynamics of terrorism over time. The document is jointly produced by the African Centre for the Study and Research on Terrorism (ACSRT) of the African Union (AU) and the NATO Strategic Direction South - Hub (the Hub).


"Victim" or "Security Threat": Gendered Narratives on Women Returnees to the MENA Region

"Victim" or "Security Threat": Gendered Narratives on Women Returnees to the MENA Region

Sep 3, 2020

The complex question of the Foreign Terrorist Fighters and their families returning from areas once controlled by DAESH is a high priority policy area for NATO members and its partners, particularly in the South. Of the at least 6,900 foreign women – some 3,000 from the MENA region – who are believed to have traveled to join DAESH in Syria and Iraq, it is unclear how many have actually returned to their home countries since the fall of the terrorist group’s last stronghold of Baghouz in 2019. What has happened to these women? Are they trying to return? What awaits them when they arrive?


NSD-S Hub Webinar africa's response to COVID-19

NSD-S Hub Webinar africa's response to COVID-19

Jun 15, 2020

NATO Strategic Direction South Hub (NSD-S Hub) and Three Stones International (TSI) collaborated to conduct a live online webinar on the 28 April, 2020, supplemented by secondary data review and an online survey, to better understand Africa’s response to COVID-19, and relative successes, challenges and recommendations for NATO’s contribution. The webinar dialogue and audience comments allowed the NSD-S Hub to engage and learn from African experts sharing regional experience from eight different countries. The discussion addressed COVID-19 preparedness and response across the African continent, including the overall impact on political, economic and social stability. While the panellists touched on matters related to the immediate impacts on health and wellbeing of citizens, they also addressed the long-term implications to trade, national and regional economies, political stability and regional cooperation. Additionally, the dialogue explored recommendations for support which African nations and NATO could employ both in pandemic response and post-pandemic recovery.


China's Relevance in the Security Domain in Africa and the Middle East

China's Relevance in the Security Domain in Africa and the Middle East

Jun 12, 2020

China’s involvement in Africa and the Middle East region is not new but it has significantly increased since the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative. Globally, even though China remains behind other historical partners such as the USA or Europe, the growth rate of its engagement is far higher. The gradual erosion of the Chinese principle of non-intervention has led China to change its posture vis-à-vis other developing countries, shouldering its responsibilities to help and, in some cases, to act as a model.


NSD-S Hub Webinar Report Local Solutions to Combatting Human Trafficking

NSD-S Hub Webinar Report Local Solutions to Combatting Human Trafficking

May 21, 2020

On February 11, 2020 NATO’s Strategic Direction – South Hub (NSD-S Hub), in collaboration with Three Stones International (TSI), facilitated a webinar dialogue on the condition of trafficking in persons (TIP) and human smuggling in Africa. This live webinar, in conjunction with a secondary data review, and an online survey supported the NSD-S Hub’s research agenda regarding the promotion of political and economic stability in Africa. The webinar panelists were subject matter experts in the fields of human trafficking, smuggling, migration, and human rights. Additionally, data was collected via surveys from an additional 20 subject matter experts from 13 different African countries, which provided the NSD-S Hub with well-informed insight into the realities of TIP and human smuggling in Africa.


NSD-S HUB Migrations, Human Smuggling and Human Trafficking

NSD-S HUB Migrations, Human Smuggling and Human Trafficking

May 20, 2020

Over the last decade, mass and unregulated migration has sparked significant concerns in public opinion, particularly in Europe. While the number of new arrivals of migrants has sharply declined from its high of over one million in 2015, the movement and integration of those from across the Mediterranean remain today of major concern for Europe and, by extension, the Atlantic Alliance. Nonetheless, the development of a collective understanding among NATO members of the security implications of such migration for the wider Mediterranean region (including North Africa and Sahel) has not yet been achieved. Making the topic even more complex is the inclusion of the question of direct connections between migrants and terrorists in its framing of the issue.


NSD-S Hub Webinar Report Digital Technology in Africa - Opportunities and Obstacles

NSD-S Hub Webinar Report Digital Technology in Africa - Opportunities and Obstacles

Feb 25, 2020

A digital technology revolution has swept across the African continent over the last two decades, facilitating new business ventures and connecting the African people in ways never before possible. NATO Strategic Direction South Hub (NSD-S Hub), in collaboration with Three Stones International, arranged an online video conference with various subject matter experts from across Africa to discuss the challenges and opportunities of digital technology on the continent.


Regional Dynamics in the Gulf of Guinea

Regional Dynamics in the Gulf of Guinea

Feb 20, 2020

The Gulf of Guinea is one of the World’s richest yet still under-developed regions. It produces about 5 million barrels of oil per day and about 600 thousand tons of fish are caught every year. There are 1.2 million hectares of mangroves, large reserves of minerals and other natural resources such as gas, diamonds, gold and uranium as well as a very rich rain forest, accounting for 20% of the world’s total, which provides shelter and protection to a large portion of the World’s biodiversity. The region is also a major maritime highway for world trade which, considering the abundance of raw materials, further increases its relevance for rich and industrialised countries.


Russia’s Course of Action in Africa and the Middle East

Russia’s Course of Action in Africa and the Middle East

Jan 22, 2020

Russia’s increasing assertiveness in Africa and the Middle East can be seen both as a reaction to the economic and political containment regime enforced by western countries after the annexation of Crimea and as a further effort to improve its geopolitical standing, well beyond the near abroad where Moscow has been consistently advocating the idea of a “Russian world”.


Energy Security in MENA: Challenges and Opportunities

Energy Security in MENA: Challenges and Opportunities

Jan 21, 2020

Until very recently, energy security had been considered a purely economic issue, whereas it is now understood to be a multi-dimensional concept made up of technical, economic, social, environmental and geo-political aspects. The absence of protection from or adaptability to threats caused by or having an effect on the energy supply chain’ is a commonly accepted definition.


Geopolitical Dynamics in the Horn of Africa and Mechanisms for Collaboration between NATO and IGAD Countries

Geopolitical Dynamics in the Horn of Africa and Mechanisms for Collaboration between NATO and IGAD Countries

Dec 19, 2019

The security situation in this sub-region is highly complex due to several socio-economic, political and geo-political factors which range from extreme poverty to maritime insecurity.


NSD-S Hub Webinar Conflict Minerals: Tendencies and Developments

NSD-S Hub Webinar Conflict Minerals: Tendencies and Developments

Nov 26, 2019

The region of the Great Lakes, and the Democratic Republic of Congo in particular, are affected by the Conflict Minerals that perpetuates underdevelopment, exacerbates armed conflicts, funds rebel armed groups, and maintains high levels of human rights violations. The nexus between minerals and conflicts is not well analyzed. Therefore, local African experts were sought by to help contextualize this nexus while exchanging views on how NATO can better contribute to security and stability.


Competition for African resources and the role of external actors

Competition for African resources and the role of external actors

Oct 23, 2019

The continent of Africa has a multitude of resources and competition for them is extremely complicated. Many external actors are often very interested in one or more resource. In some cases the need is critical, made even more intense when several external actors each have critical needs. Often the resources are strategic for several external actors and are at the same time limited.


Informal Governance of Non State Armed Groups in the Sahel

Informal Governance of Non State Armed Groups in the Sahel

Oct 17, 2019

Non-state armed groups, including violent extremist organizations, self-defense militias, and criminal gangs, are governance providers to local populations in the Sahel to a much greater degree than previously reported in the so-called “ungoverned spaces. NSAGs provide four key forms of governance: security; justice; political and economic administration; social support and enforcement of social rules, across large sections of Mali, but also in Burkina Faso and Niger.


The Rationale behind India's Shift to Africa

The Rationale behind India's Shift to Africa

Oct 16, 2019

Africa, as a continent of economic opportunities, is attracting foreign players. In this context, India is emerging as an important partner, especially for Eastern and Southern Africa. The complexity of its geopolitical environment combined with internal specificities motivated the revival of interest for the continent.


Webinar on: Africa's Development and Security Nexus

Webinar on: Africa's Development and Security Nexus

Sep 9, 2019

The NATO Strategic Direction – South HUB connects allies, partners, civil society and subject matter experts to better predict and prevent instability and insecurity.


Webinar on Africa - Obstacles to Opportunities

Webinar on Africa - Obstacles to Opportunities

Aug 14, 2019

The NATO Strategic Direction – South HUB connects allies, partners, civil society and subject matter experts to better predict and prevent instability and insecurity.


Study Day on Impacts of Climate Change on Stability in MENA

Study Day on Impacts of Climate Change on Stability in MENA

Jun 6, 2019

In the framework of its mission, the NATO Strategic Direction-South (NSD-S) Hub continues to organize events to improve NATO’s situational awareness and understanding of the Southern Flank, contributing to NATO’s projecting stability efforts in the South. The NSD-S Hub examines regional perspectives on challenges and opportunities to further NATO’s aim of supporting stability and security for Africa and the Middle East.




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