The Resilient Civilians project contributes to a better understanding of the complex factors that lie between and affect relations between states, their security forces, and their populations. The aim is an increased understanding of the role of civilians in conflict, in particular “hybrid” threat and warfare scenarios, whereby multiple actors are involved (state and non-state), as well as multiple means employed (military and non-military) to destabilize a society. In these cases, civilians – regular people – are often targeted, manipulated, recruited, and affected by so-called hybrid measures.

Resilient Civilians take a closer look at the complexity of the civilian landscape in conflict. We will examine different possible scenarios of vulnerability and strengths in communities that could potentially find themselves (or already have been) targeted or enveloped within hybrid warfare contexts. National and international institutions, including the EU and NATO, already recognize the civilian landscape but from a primarily “top-down” perspective, where these institutions assume the needs and behaviors of civilian populations and design a response plan accordingly (eg: baseline requirements to stabilize transport, energy, etc). Countries like Norway and Sweden are dusting off previous “Total Defense” concepts which rely upon varying levels of cooperation by civilians or between civilian and military.


Resilient Civilians is a research project led by UiT The Arctic University of Norway, and is partly funded by the NATO Science for Peace and Security (SPS) Programme, as well as by the partner institutions. Please feel free to contact us for any questions and comments.

Gunhild Hoogensen Gjørv – Project Manager
UiT The Arctic University of Norway
Telephone: (+47) 94842610

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