The EU’s Civilian Headquarters: Inside the Control Room of Civilian Crisis Management

This is the first study to provide a comprehensive timeline and examination of the development and inner workings of Civilian Planning and Conduct Capability (CPCC). It analyses its creation, its primary functions as the HQ of the EU’s civilian crisis management operations, and ways for CPCC to grow and evolve. It provides a useful guide to understanding the command structure of civilian CSDP, the management and planning of missions, and areas for further development of the institution.

This Chaillot paper from EUISS aims to tell the story of CPCC's founding, evolution, and potential. It begins with an account of the creation of CPCC in 2007 to address the lack of a clear chain of command and control for civilian CSDP missions and ensure the safe conduct of missions. It then explains the different functions of CPCC and the challenges it has faced so far. The four main functions, each given their own chapter, include: the methodologies and procedures of planning; conduct of the missions through command, monitoring, and evaluation; support through capability development; and coordination on strategic, operational, and tactical levels.  

 The next set of chapters evaluates the performance and future outlook of CPCC, focusing on three key operational challenges: how to integrate civilian CSDP into the EU’s integrated approach, how to learn from experience and adapt to new situations, and how to raise the level of ambition and capabilities for civilian CSDP. The document concludes that CPCC has played a pivotal role in shaping the EU’s evolution as a security provider. Looking forward, it exhorts CPCC to continue to adapt and improve its functioning in light of the changing geopolitical context and the higher expectations set by the Civilian CSDP Compact and the Strategic Compass. It also provides some policy recommendations for enhancing the coherence, effectiveness and visibility of CPCC and civilian CSDP. 

Reference: Bellocchi, E. et al. (2022). The EU’s Civilian Headquarters – Inside the control room of civilian crisis management. European Union Institute for Security Studies (EUISS) 


PDF | 84 pages

Read the full report


The Civilian CSDP Compact - A Success Story for the EU's Crisis Management Cinderella?
This policy brief by the European Union Institute for Security Studies…
Handbook on CSDP: The Common Security and Defense Policy of the European Union
The fourth edition of the Handbook provides a complete, detailed, and…
Communication from the Commission on the EU Security Union Strategy
This document issued by the Commission in 2020 pictures the changing…