Under the High Patronage of His Majesty The King Mohammed VI

Thematic Areas

The conference consists of an opening plenary session, ten thematic sessions with panel discussions, a special session on the current and future trends and challenges, and a closing session. In parallel, there will be side-events covering specific topics on nuclear security.

The thematic sessions will address the following technical areas:

  • Thematic Area 1:
    Sustainable, strong and independent nuclear security regulatory framework
  • Thematic Area 2:
    Implementation of the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and its Amendment
  • Thematic Area 3:
    Security of radioactive material
  • Thematic Area 4:
    Evaluation of threats
  • Thematic Area 5:
    Evaluating nuclear security effectiveness
  • Thematic Area 6:
    Demonstrable Competency
  • Thematic Area 7:
    Response to nuclear security events
  • Thematic Area 8:
    Information security
  • Thematic Area 9:
    Addressing interfaces
  • Thematic Area 10:
    Public Information and Communication
  • Special Session:
    Current and Future Trends and Challenges

Thematic Area 1:
Sustainable, strong and independent nuclear security regulatory framework

As part of the implementation of a legislative and regulatory framework, an independent regulatory body should have, inter-alia, enough authority, competence, and human and financial resources to discharge its responsibilities. Likewise, other stakeholders, including TSOs and law enforcement agencies, should have adequate competencies and resources. All these players should coordinate closely their activities to implement an effective national nuclear security framework. This session will discuss elements of a strong national nuclear security framework, the criteria and approaches to ensure continuous improvements and sustainability. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Legislative and regulatory framework for nuclear security;
  • Strong, sustainable and independent regulatory body; 
  • The role of National Nuclear Security Support Centers (NSSC) and Centers of Excellence (CoE) in sustaining a national nuclear security framework; 
  • Stakeholders involvement in supporting the nuclear security regulatory framework;
  • Nuclear security for newcomers; and
  • Strengthening the global nuclear security framework. 

 

Mr Khammar

Thematic Area 2:
Implementation of the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and its Amendment

As it is the only legally binding international instrument in the area of physical protection, the CPPNM and its Amendment constitute key elements of the international legal framework for nuclear security. In this session we will explore national experiences and lessons learned in the implementation of CPPNM and its Amendment. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Implementation of the CPPNM and its Amendment; lessons learned, case studies and challenges; 
  • Universalization of the CPPNM and its Amendment;
  • Regional and global networks contributions in implementing the CPPNM and its Amendment;
  • Fulfillment of international transport obligations under the CPPNM and its Amendment;
  • Implementation of the CPPNM and its Amendment through the IAEA Nuclear Security Series; and 
  • Strengthening the CPPNM and its Amendment. 

Thematic Area 3:
Security of radioactive material

Radioactive material, including radioactive sources, provides benefits to humanity in medicine, industry, energy, agriculture, research, etc. However, losing control over these materials could lead to unacceptable consequences. Aware that the risks arising from such incidents must be minimized and protected against, this session will discuss national best practices and lessons learned in the application of appropriate regulatory oversight and control. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • IAEA Code of Conduct on the Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources and its supplementary guidance;
  • How to regulate radioactive material from cradle-to-grave;
  • Challenges facing oversight of radioactive material in and out of regulatory control;
  • Regulations for and control of security of radioactive material (national experiences); and  
  • Prevention of illicit trafficking of radioactive material (national experiences).

Thematic Area 4:
Evaluation of threats

A comprehensive regulatory framework for nuclear security takes into account national and international threats, and constantly evolving adversary tactics and capabilities. The adversaries may include insiders with access authority and knowledge, as well as external threats. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Personnel trustworthiness and reliability;
  • Mitigating the insider threat;
  • Regulatory challenges to develop and implement human reliability programmes; 
  • Developing and implementing a threat statement or Design Basis Threat (DBT); and
  • Capacity-building for threat assessment and DBT.
 

Thematic Area 5:
Evaluating nuclear security effectiveness

The process of planning and conducting an evaluation of the effectiveness of physical protection systems is one way to assess and make improvements in nuclear security framework. The session shows approaches used to evaluate the effectiveness of a nuclear security system. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Regulatory approaches on physical protection design and evaluation tools; 
  • Best practices to assess the effectiveness of physical protection, including methodologies and techniques;
  • Use of the graded approach in the evaluation of the security system; 
  • Developing and implementing performance evaluations;  
  • Verifying regulatory effectiveness through inspections; and
  • Evaluating transport security effectiveness.

Thematic Area 6:
Demonstrable Competency

The international community recognizes that managers and operators with security responsibilities need to be demonstrably competent. However, one of the major challenges is the lack of internationally recognized training and competency for personnel with security accountabilities. The session explores methods used to define and meet the needed competencies and capabilities in the field. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Preparing the next generation of nuclear security professionals; 
  • Training and maintaining competency for nuclear security professionals;
  • Succession planning and knowledge management;
  • The role of educational institutions in nuclear security; and
  • Regulatory approaches to training and sustaining capabilities.

Thematic Area 7:
Response to nuclear security events

Nuclear security programmes are developed to address events arising from daily security practices, to peaceful demonstrations, and to external assaults. This session discusses how national programmes have prepared for, or responded to, the continuum of security events faced by nuclear facilities or events associated with radioactive materials. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Contingency planning to respond to nuclear security events;
  • Nuclear security exercises to evaluate effectiveness;
  • A national case study in responding to a nuclear security event;
  • Nuclear forensics;
  • International and regional cooperation to respond to a security event; and 
  • Interfaces between contingency planning and emergency planning.

Thematic Area 8:
Information security

The protection of sensitive information from unauthorized disclosure is essential. For that purpose, a national programme should be established and maintained to protect classified and sensitive information from being compromised. In this session, we will discuss information protection strategies and the challenges of implementing a program to protect against the cyber threat. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Protection of sensitive and/or classified information;
  • Establishment and assessment of information security systems;  
  • Implementing a computer security programme;
  • Transparency vs. confidentiality of information; and 
  • Challenges and solutions for sharing sensitive and/or classified information with licensees using, storing and transporting high risk radioactive sources and nuclear material.

Thematic Area 9:
Addressing interfaces

Nuclear security interfaces with both safety and safeguards, which requires an ongoing evaluation to avoid conflicts and strengthen synergies. Therefore, taking into account that the interfaces between security/safety and security/safeguards are dealt with in a seamless and effective way, this session will discuss good practices for synergy among them. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Security/safety interface in practice: lessons learned;
  • Similarities and differences of safety and security; 
  • Integration of safety culture and security culture;  
  • Nuclear Material Accounting and Control (NMAC) for security and safeguards; and  
  • Enhancing the regulatory oversight programme based on safety and security synergy concepts.

Thematic Area 10:
Public Information and Communication

Communicating proactively and responsibly with the public and interested parties, including government institutions, on nuclear security related issues is one of the responsibilities of the regulatory body. Therefore, the establishment of a proper communication strategy and mechanisms among all concerned parties and the general public will support the regulatory body in performing its functions. In this session we will look into the best practices and experiences of how to communicate with national stakeholders and external partners and how to balance confidentiality and transparency. This session could include, but would not be limited to, the following topics: 

  • National strategies and approaches in public information and communication;
  • Communicating nuclear security events to the public and to the international community, as appropriate; 
  • Communication between regulatory body and stakeholders;
  • Confidence building on the actions of the regulatory body;
  • Nuclear security and contemporary communication challenges; and 
  • Information exchange on nuclear security incidents: why and how? 

Special Session:
Current and Future Trends and Challenges

As the threat landscape is continuously evolving, this session will be designed to explore current and future trends and challenges to point out nuclear security challenges. This special session could include, but not limited to, the following topics:

  • Current and emerging technologies for nuclear security;
  • Alternative technologies;
  • SMRs and portable reactors;
  • Computer and cyber-security; and
  • Emerging threats to nuclear security: drones and 3D technologies. 

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