Highlights 2019 – Perspectives 2020

As we approach the end of the Year, the SERENE-RISC team would like to take a look back at the highlights for 2019 and provide a view of the year ahead. 

Contributing to Canadian cybersecurity events
This year SERENE-RISC took part in more than 10 cybersecurity events in Canada (GoSec2019, SECREV 2019, Forensik Conference 2019, Statistics Canada round table, etc.). Among these events, SERENE-RISC held its annual conference in Ottawa, bringing together 22 speakers (videos of the conference available on our YouTube Channel) and 150 participants from the public and private sector, university researchers and graduate students.

Engaging students
In 2019, SERENE-RISC provided many occasions to engage with students. The Cyberstat Challenge enabled 19 students to participate in major conferences and present data from Statistics Canada’s 2017 Canadian Survey of Cyber Security and Cybercrime through innovative research and informative posters. In order to engage students to pursue careers in cybersecurity, SERENE-RISC launched the video campaign "A career in cybersecurity?" and published the online directory of cybersecurity programs and courses offered by Canadian postsecondary institutions.

Mobilizing knowledge in cybersecurity
Once again, the network was highly involved in knowledge mobilization in 2019. SERENE-RISC launched the last module of Cybersec101 entitled “Addressing online hate” with project SOMEONE and posted more or less 60 videos on our YouTube Channel, published 2 Digests and posted nearly 40 articles on the Konnect platform. New partnerships also enabled the network to involve more women in cybersecurity (We Are Cyber initiative) as well as reach non-specialized sectors (Independent Media Arts Alliance, IMAA).
Strengthening the network and exploring 2020 
The network's 2018-2019 annual report received a very positive evaluation that exceeded the objectives and expectations of the NCE. Based on this substantial experience SERENE-RISC defined guidelines to ensure the continuity of the network beyond March 2021. An application for a partnership grant will be submitted to SSHRC next February. This partnership aims to leverage a transdisciplinary approach grounded in the social sciences to better understand the role played by the human factor in cybersecurity. The project will bring together professionals from the academic, private and public sectors and will focus on student training and knowledge mobilization.