Our annual flagship conference is a unique initiative that stands out for its participatory and innovative character. The YSC aims at connecting young thinkers with policy experts and academic scholars in a critical and constructive dialogue about the future of European foreign and security policy.


Through the participation on panels and workshops, the submission of policy papers, and a wide range of creative exchanges, the conference provides a perfect environment for sharing and discussing new ideas, such as Franco-German relations and the EU’s strategic autonomy

Our panels and debates are conducted along two dimensions in each of our five topic pillars to give content both depth and space for interdisciplinary contributions.


The Young Security Conference 2022

The third edition of the Young Security Conference took place on 3-4 June 2022 at the Amerikahaus in Munich. The conference was held in a hybrid format with online and in-person attendance.

The Conference provided both depth and space for interdisciplinary contributions, building upon two dimensions: the Transatlantic alliance and Franco-German relationship, with a specific focus on the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Additionally, we discussed feminist foreign policy, the war in Ukraine, and the future of think-thanks among other topics.

Two dimensions

All eyes on France

In the first half of 2022, France held the six-month presidency of the Council of the European Union. This occurred in the same year as its presidential elections, which remained vital for the definition of its European policy.

France’s EU Presidency faced the challenging task of readjusting the EU's strategic compass and the French-led Council agenda for 2022 should have set the course for European security and defence policy for the coming years.

It should have identified ways to ensure the ‘sovereignty’ and ‘autonomy’ of the EU in the face of both past and novel threats. The Franco-German cooperation continued to actively shape the future European security agenda in several domains.

Readjusting Transatlantic cooperation

We now live in a world affected by COVID-19 and climate change, with ever more frequent crises, affecting great powers and our collective security. After the Trump presidency and recent episodes, such as the withdrawal from Afghanistan or the AUKUS polemics, the transatlantic alliance finds itself at a historical crossroads, unsure of its place.

The YSC and its Fellows have the responsibility to provide a new voice, new answers and new questions to these challenges that are not only transatlantic but truly global.

Five pillars 

Climate Security: The climate crisis is the biggest challenge of our lifetime. The Euro-Atlantic community and individual states must provide solutions and show willingness to move towards a sustainable model of governance and development. We need a revival of rules and institutions, and we must raise efforts to assess climate security risks and establish concrete steps forward towards limiting climate change and the degradation of the environment.

Cyber Security: The cyber threat level across the globe, and particularly in Europe, has constantly risen over the last years. This will also involve a consideration of the military dimension of cyberspace, a potential role of the EU in the still to be defined concept of “cyber diplomacy”, or the rise of AI - particularly amidst national divergences.

European Neighbourhood Security: In the context of EU’s objective to become a stronger actor in the world, the topic of European neighbourhood aims at delivering a comprehensive image of the current top-priority issues in the EU, and the surrounding regions. Thus, regions like North Africa, the Middle East, the Russian Federation, and Central Asia manifest a constant interest for the European Union, from perspectives manifesting preventive approaches that contribute to the EU’s current and future endeavors towards its objectives.

Health Security: France and Germany intend to make the medical and pharmaceutical industries more resilient, as the pandemic has revealed clear weaknesses. Ensuring a continuous medical supply throughout Europe has gained strategic importance and poses a great opportunity for the Union to show the added value of supranational cooperation.

European Sovereignty and Autonomy: Franco-German and transatlantic cooperation in the defence industry, also involving other European countries, will become much more significant and play a major role in the future. But here, too, different approaches and views in Europe could undermine Europe's further development into a strategically autonomous international actor.

Adnan Ćerimagić Senior Analyst, European Stability Initiative
Adnan Ćerimagić (Bosnia and Herzegovina) is ESI’s Senior Analyst for the Western Balkans and is researching EU policy towards the region. Before joining ESI in August 2013, Adnan has worked for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo and Brussels.
Alexander Sorg PhD Candidate, Hertie School of Governance
Alexander Sorg is a PhD researcher at the Hertie School, and the Teaching Assistant to Wolfgang Ischinger. His research interests include nuclear weapons, public opinion, and military alliances. In his doctoral thesis, he focuses on the causes and consequences of U.S. nuclear weapon deployments.
Arne Bård Dalhaug Lieutenant General, NATO; OSCE Civilian Observer in Ukraine - 2016-2019
Arne B. Dalhaug has a long and distinguished career behind him in the Norwegian Armed Forces, the Norwegian Ministry of Defence, and in NATO. He was promoted Brigadier General in 2000 and since that time he has occupied several high-level positions.
Betty Suh PhD Candidate, Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy (IFSH)
Betty Suh is Research Fellow at the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP) and PhD Fellow at the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy at the University of Hamburg (IFSH). Betty works on issues of nuclear non-proliferation and security developments in the Asia-Pacific.
Charles Gyamfi Ofori Policy Lead for Climate Change, Africa Centre for Energy Policy
Charles is currently a Policy Lead on Climate Change and Energy Transition at the Africa Center for Energy Policy (ACEP). His research interests include risk mitigation and investment decisions on utility-scale and small-scale renewable energy technologies in Africa.
Corinne Pereira da Silva French Consul General, Munich
Corinne Pereira studied literature and political science. She is a career diplomat. At the central administration of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, she was head of the Franco-German mission at the European Union Directorate (2007-2010).
Delphine O Secretary-General, Generation Equality Forum 2021
Delphine O is ambassador-at-large and Secretary General for the Generation Equality Forum (Beijing+25). She led the organization of the largest international summit for women’s rights since 1995, convened by UN Women and co-chaired by France and Mexico.
Anja Opitz President, Global Health Security Alliance; Advisor, Akademie für Politische Bildung Tutzing
Anja Opitz is President of the Global Health Security Alliance and a founding member of MEIA Research Munich. She is also Head of Section for International Politics and Security Policy at APB Tutzing, an interdisciplinary academy for research and political training and coaching near Munich.
Frank Sauer Senior Research Fellow, Universität der Bundeswehr
Frank Sauer studied political science, sociology, philosophy and law at the Goethe University in Frankfurt, where he also received his doctorate. He is the author of Atomic Anxiety: Deterrence, Taboo, and the Non-Use of U.S. Nuclear Weapons” and co-editor of the “Handbook International Relations”.
Jan-Cedric Hansen Chief Medical Officer, Centre d'Hébergement et d'Accompagnement Gérontologique
Dr. Jan Cedric Hansen is the Vice Presiddent of the Global Health Security Alliance and Director of the British strategic consultant firm StratAdviser Ltd since 2008 as well as the Chief Medical Officer of a French Public Nursing Home.
Galyna Mykhailiuk Member of Parliament (Verkhovna Rada) of Ukraine
Galyna Olegivna Mykhailiuk is a lawyer, Doctor of Legal Science, Member of Parliament from the “Sluga Narodu” party at the parliamentary election in 2019.
Jérémie Gallon Managing Director and Head, McLarty Europe at McLarty Associates
Jérémie Gallon is Managing Director and Head of Europe at McLarty Associates. Before his position at McLarty, Mr. Gallon spent three years leading AmCham France, which he turned into a proactive and involved “do-tank,” putting AmCham France at the heart of a number of economic and policy matters.
Jessica Berlin Founder, CoStruct; Visiting Fellow, GMFUS
Jessica Berlin is the founder of the strategy consultancy CoStruct, a Visiting Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, and a political analyst at Deutsche Welle News. She focuses on transatlantic relations, geopolitical order, African-European relations, and Germany’s evolving role
Lydia Wachs Researcher, German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP)
Lydia Wachs is a researcher at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), working on nuclear policy and arms control with a focus on Russia. Prior to joining SWP, she worked at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) in London.
Marc-Oliver Pahl Chairholder and Professor, IMT Atlantique and Chaire Cyber CNI
Prof. Dr. Marc-Oliver Pahl heads the Chair Cybersecurity for Critical Networked Infrastructures (cyberCNI.fr) at IMT Atlantique Rennes, France. The chair hosts 18 professors, 8 PhDs, 8 PostDocs, and multiple engineers and interns. Marc-Oliver is an adjunct professor of Carleton University in Canada.
Merle Spellerberg Member of the German Bundestag for Bündnis 90/Die Grünen
Merle Spellerberg is a German politician and member of the German Bundestag for Bündnis 90/Die Grünen.
Muriel Rouyer Professor of Political Science, Harvard Ash Center and University of Nantes, France
Muriel Rouyer is an adjunct professor of public policy. A specialist of politics in the European Union, her research focuses on judicial and transnational democracy and mobilizations, constitutionalism, European and French feminism, and French politics.
Pavlo Kovtoniuk Co-Founder of Ukrainian Healthcare Center; former deputy Minister of Health
Pavlo Kovtoniuk served as a Deputy Minister of Health of Ukraine and worked as a consultant for the WHO Health Systems Office in Barcelona. In 2021 he co-founded the Ukrainian Healthcare Center - UHC, an independent health policy think tank based in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Peter Grk Secretary-General, Bled Strategic Forum
Peter Grk is currently serving as Secretary General of the Bled Strategic Forum and National Coordinator for the Western Balkans at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Slovenia. With 18 years of experience in the diplomatic service, Peter Grk has held posts in Ankara, Copenhagen and Brussels.
Rokhaya Diallo French feminist, Journalist, Filmmaker, Writer
Rokhaya Diallo is a French journalist, author, filmmaker, and activist for racial, gender and religious equality. According to The New York Times, she is “one of France's most prominent anti-racism activists.”
Sasha Borovik General Council, Helsing
Sasha Borovik is an American lawyer of German citizenship. He was invited to be First Deputy Minister of Economy of Ukraine. He also served as a deputy governor and an adviser to the governor of Odessa Oblast, Mikheil Saakashvili.
Tanya Herfurth Co-founder & Director, Young Leaders for Health
Tanya Herfurth's involvement in global health policy ranges from co-founding and directing the international non-profit organization Young Leaders for Health (YLH), offering solutions to global health challenges to working on resilience strengthening at the Headquarters of the German Red Cross.
Sheena Anderson Project Manager, Centre for Feminist Foreign Policy
Sheena Anderson is a political scientist, Black feminist and intesectional environmentalist. She has been working for the Berlin-based Centre for Feminist Foreign Policy (CFFP) starting in 2020, since Fall 2021 as a project manager responsible for antiracism, climate justice and the Netzwerk F.
Tinatin Khidasheli Chairperson, Civic IDEA; former Minister of Defence of Georgia
Tinatin "Tina" Khidasheli is a Georgian jurist and politician. A Republican Party member and former civil society activist, she was appointed as Georgia's Minister of Defense on 1 May 2015, becoming the country's first ever female defense minister.
Zoran Nechev Senior Researcher, IDSCS Skopje
Zoran Nechev is a Senior Researcher and Head of the Center for EU integration at the Institute for Democracy (IDSCS), a think tank organisation from North Macedonia devoted to research and capacity-building in matters related to EU affairs, good governance and parliamentary support.
Frédéric Charillon Université Clermont Auvergne & Coordinator, ENA
Frédéric Charillon is a university professor in political science at the University of Clermont Auvergne and Coordinator of the teaching of International Issues and Defence at ENA. His work focuses on the analysis of defence, foreign policy and international relations issues.
Joachim Posegga Professor and Chair of IT Security, Universität Passau
Joachim Possega is heading the "IT-Security" Group at the University of Passau since April 2008. Before coming to Passau he was appointed Professor at the University of Hamburg in 2003 and founded the "Security in Distributed Systems (SVS)" Group at the University of Hamburg.
Joseph Dellatte Research Fellow for Climate, Energy, and Environment, Institut Montaigne
Joseph Dellatte is a PhD Fellow affiliated at the Graduate School of Economics / Faculty of Economics of Kyoto University. His research is in Political Economy, International Relations, Green Economics, Climate Policy and Carbon Pricing.
Maren Vieluf Researcher, Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy (IFSH)
Maren Vieluf is a Researcher in the Challenges to Deep Cuts project at the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy at the University of Hamburg (IFSH). Her research focuses on nuclear disarmament, arms control and non-prolif­eration.
Alexander Baunov Russian international policy expert, journalist, publicist, and former diplomat
Alexander Baunov is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and an editor in chief. Before joining Carnegie, Baunov spent five years working as a senior editor at the independent news website Slon.ru, where he worked since its launch.
Angela Kane Sam Nunn Distinguished Fellow, Nuclear Threat Initiative
Angela Kane is a German diplomat and was formerly the UN High Representative for Disarmament Affairs and Under-Secretary-General for Management in the United Nations.
Cécilia Vidotto Labastie Programme Officer, Institut Montaigne
Cecilia Vidotto Labastie is a Program Officer at the Institut Montaigne within the Europe Program. Before joining Institut Montaigne, she worked in Beirut and Brussels for the International Center for Transitional Justice.
Yana Popkostova Associate Analyst, European Union Institute for Security Studies
Yana Popkostova is an Associate Analyst at EUISS. Responsible for the environmental security portfolio, she investigates the compound security challenges posed by climate change, environmental degradation, and ecosystems depletion.
Previous conferences
Young Security Conference 2021

The second conference was held in July 2021. It ​​succeeded in delivering content to a high standard, building upon its inaugural edition in February 2020. Despite the conditions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, namely the inability to bring speakers and participants together in person, the conference recorded a real success in building bridges among attendees. The 2021 event ensured continuity by also anchoring its multidisciplinary reflections on central concepts such as the role of the West on today’s global challenges, the ever-central transatlantic relations, or the role of the Franco-German at the center of a European Integration process which survived a difficult decade and thus finds itself at a crossroads, while remaining a hope to those who want to build a better world for the present and future generations.

Speakers: Ambika Varma, Christine Strassmaier, Dr. André Barrinha, Anja Opitz, Dr. Gustav Lindstrom, Dr. Louise van Schaik, , Dr. Patricia Daenhardt, Dr. Roderick Parkes, Dr. Stefan Göbbels, Dr. Vira Ratsiborynska, Eve Roehrig, Gabriele Köhler, Guillaume Klossa, Frédéric Charillon, Prof. Dr. Stephan Stetter, Thomas Pellerin Carlin, M. Ulrich Lechte
Young Security Conference 2020

The first conference was held in February 2020. The success of the YSC 2020 is a testament to the capacity of this conference, as the flagship initiative of EuropaNova Germany, to fill an existing gap in foreign and security policy conferences in Europe. This gap is filled by the combination of academic demands with a palatable approach to the public and younger audiences which allows for an effective tabling and discussion of proposals, perspectives and eventually policies to better the continent and the world we live in.

Speakers: Prof. Dr. Stephan Stetter, Dr. Jean Yves Haine, Anja Opitz, Dr. Holger Stritzel, Mr. Rüdiger Lentz, , Dr. Asiem El Difraoui, Mr. Denis Cenusa, , Dr. Roderick Parkes, Ms. Alena Kudzko, Mr. Michael Buschheuer, Ms. Lisa Raffy, Ms. Sonja Licht, M. Ulrich Lechte, M. Julien Serre, Dr. Zaki Laïdi, Dr. Nicolas Fescharek, Dr. Elise Bernard