2023 Comprehensive Assessment Report on Training for CSDP (CART)

The CART is the regular systematic review of CSDP training to aid decision-makers in revision of the current policy and architecture. It provides a step-by-step overview of the foundational policy documents composing the training framework, the institutions making up the training architecture, and the implementation of training as provided by this architecture. The report finds several issues with the current training system, commonly that there is much that has been built up over time but with insufficient coordination and quality control.

Beginning with the policy framework, the report first summarises the evolution of training policy from the Policy on Training for CSDP and its Implementing Guidelines to the CSDP Training Programme, as well as relevant Council Conclusions (2021, 2022, 2023) and the 2023 Civilian CSDP Compact. The report finds that the policy framework can be improved by clarifying the roles for ESDC, EEAS, and Member States (MS) to streamline the training cycle. Within the training architecture, the EU Civilian Training Group (EUCTG) configuration of CivCom is responsible for steering the training system through the setting of training requirements and provision of strategic guidance to training institutions and MS, but due to lack of coordination with the relevant entities (EEAS, ESDC, MS institutions), there are flaws in training provision as some staff do not receive mandatory trainings before deployment to Missions or Operations. Useful fixes for this would be the further development of the role of ESDC, currently mainly a coordinator for training institutions within MS, but which could take a more central role in assisting EUCTG in leadership and policy implementation. It is also recommended that FPI, CEPOL, EAPTC, and JHA institutions within MS be brought in to take a more active role in training funding and provision. 

Within the provision of training services, there has been success in building out a wide array of courses. However, once again the lack of coordination poses a problem to effective service provision. Courses in the CSDP Training Programme are centralised in the Goalkeeper-Schoolmaster database provided by EEAS. However, one set of courses is organised under ESDC, which has an effective quality assurance mechanism the report commends, but the remaining courses on the database are from miscellaneous MS training providers and lack ESDC's effective coordination and quality control. Training Requirements Analysis (TRA) reports are an effective means of assessing the requirements for specific areas of training, but the methodology is very resource- and time-intensive and there are some training areas that do not have TRAs, providing incomplete and inefficient analysis to the system as a whole. 

The report paints a picture of a system with sufficient resources and workforce to coordinate an effective CSDP training system, but which needs defined roles, a clearer authority structure, more coordination between actors, and more efficient use of resources. To the EU institutions involved, it provides constructive recommendations for redesigning the policy framework, and to MS it maps out the institutional framework for participation, especially useful for the MS that do not yet have a set CSDP training architecture. Within its annexes the report provides: a full list of Civilian Training Areas (CTAs), including relevant institutions and contact information; an accounting of courses provides per CTA via the Schoolmaster database; and an assessment of the 32 actions ordered by the 2022 Implementing Guidelines, of which 10 have been closed and 22 are ongoing. 

Reference: European External Action Service (2023). 2023 Comprehensive Assessment Report on Training for CSDP (CART)


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