From the 15th to the 17th of March 2022, the 2022 “Seminar for Institutional Advisors” was held in Rome at the Air Force’s General Staff, organized by the NATO Security Force Assistance Centre of Excellence (NATO SFA COE) and by the NATO Stability Policing Centre of Excellence (NATO SP COE) of Vicenza. 

This seminar stems from a request from the Defence General Staff with the aim to enhance the skills of the two Italian-led NATO Centres of Excellence to increase the training of military and civilian personnel who will be employed as Advisors at the institutional level in Security Force Assistance (SFA) and Stability Policing (SP) activities.

Participation was also extended to staff from NATO and Partner Countries who benefited from this unique initiative to meet their training needs in highly specialized areas. 

A team of qualified speakers provided the participants with excellent examples and food for thought in order to increase their skills on how to better assist the local Armed and Security Forces of a Host Nation in Stabilization and Defence Capacity Building operations. 

The first part of the seminar was dedicated to illustrating the main doctrinal and conceptual elements of NATO on Reconstruction and Stabilization Operations and on the Reform of the Security Sector with lecturers provided by the Post Conflict Operations Study Center, and on the activities of SFA and SP. The second part was dedicated to the presentation of various Case Studies by international experts who are already employed as Institutional Advisors.

The final session was attended by Ambassador Stefano Pontecorvo, who highlighted the role of the Institutional Advisor in support of the Host Nation’s authorities in the Stabilization and Reconstruction operations and Timothy Lannan of the NATO HQ International Staff, who explained the political-strategic approach in NATO’s support missions.

The seminar ended with the closing remarks of the ITA Air Force’s Chief of Staff, Lt. Gen. Luca Goretti, who congratulated the commitment of the two Centres of Excellence for the variety and professionalism of the participating staff and the speakers. He also reiterated the high value of the seminar for staff training in order to face future challenges in terms of resolution of conflicts in crisis areas. 

The seminar proved to be an excellent opportunity to increase the skills and share the experiences of the participants with the aim of training increasingly specialized Advisors. It also highlighted the importance of promoting events that combine the potential of NATO’s Centres of Excellence with the military, academic and diplomatic world.