Training is a shared responsibility between Member States, Brussels and the Field
The PDT is a “final cut briefing” complementing national preparatory training activitiesThe PDT (blue field of the training cycle) is a “final cut briefing” complementing national preparatory training activities (grey field of the training cycle).
It provides participants with the latest information, instruments and policies to enable them to effectively contribute to the implementation of the mission mandate. The PDT does not substitute national training efforts which remain in the hands of Member States, as clearly indicated in the “EU Policy on Training for CSDP”.
Furthermore the PDT course aims to increase the effectiveness of CSDP missions and operations and is designed to streamline the CSDP management culture to ensure that deploying personnel is equipped with the relevant knowledge and necessary skills.
The training also aims to enhance participants’ common understanding of EU values, CSDP Mission functioning principles as well as the environment in which they will be placed and a sense of common European identity and purpose for the civilian crisis management mission.
The PDT is always held in Brussels and thus provides a unique opportunity for future mission staff to meet their respective mission/operation Points of Contact (PoCs) and to familiarise themselves with Brussels Headquarters.
Last but not least it prepares future mission staff at operational level to make the most of the induction training which is organised by the mission/operation upon arrival in the field at tactical level (yellow field of the training cycle). It provides the newcomers with all relevant information concerning their day to day life in the field. The induction training completes the training cycle.
In the academic year 2018/19 the ESDC trained 154 persons in 9 PDT courses, which represents a slight increase to the previous academic year. 90 % of course participants deployed to the field shortly after having attended the training.
In previous academic years ESDC had difficulties in reaching contracted staff whose training is paid from the respective CSDP mission budgets. After having adapted our annual course calendar to the recruitment cycle of CPCC and after having increased the number of courses to 9 per year, contracted staff represented for the first time more than half – reaching 55 % – of PDT course participants in the academic year 2018/19!
Course Curriculum review accomplished in accordance with survey findings
Stronger focus on military training needsThe overwhelmingly positive feedback of last year’s survey – 80% of former course participants confirm that the PDT helped them for a swifter integration into mission life and for more qualified contributions to the implementation of the mandate – confirmed our endeavour and proved that we are on the right track.
Military participants were generally satisfied with the course content but wished for more military related topics of relevance to military missions and operations to be addressed.
Taking this issue at heart ESDC and MPCC have adapted the course programme accordingly by introducing briefings on the role and function of EU Military Staff (EUMS) and Military Planning and Conduct Capability (MPCC) within CSDP as well as pointing out the differences to NATO, C2 structures and intelligence support. In order to accommodate these additions to the existing course content, participants are divided into 2 distinct training audiences for nearly a day. This new format is being implemented since February 2019.
By following this request from the military side of the house we hope to attract more military staff members in the future and hope to thereby enhance our contribution to the integrated approach and a joint vision on European Common Security and Defence activities.