Implementing Human Security: Methods & Tools

June 13, 2023

This webinar aimed to identify new directions to be followed for scientific, evidence-based approaches to Human Security.


For millions of people, life is more insecure than ever. Today’s security threats are no longer isolated events, confined to certain countries or regions. Tragedies taking place a continent away and across borders quickly appear on our doorstep. A peaceful and secure world cannot be about secure borders only. It must be about people, about ensuring human security. It is time to unite around a shared vision of human security for all.Without human security, there is no national or global security. 

The Human Security Approach set forth by the United Nations and supported by UN General Assembly resolution covers seven dimensions – Food and Health Security; Economic and Political Security; Ecological, Community and Individual Security. Human Security is a preventive, participative approach to address threats to human lives, protect human freedoms and enhance human fulfilment.[1]

Human security starts with people and what it means for us to be safe and secure. It means security from harmful disruptions and calamities – in our homes, our jobs, our communities, and our environment. It integrates three freedoms: freedom from fear, freedom from want and freedom from indignity.

  • Freedom from fear refers to protecting individuals from threats directed at their security and physical integrity and includes various forms of violence that may arise from external States, the acts of a State against its citizens, the acts of one group against others and the acts of individuals against other individuals.
  • Freedom from want refers to the protection of individuals so that they might satisfy their basic needs and the economic, social and environmental aspects of life and livelihoods.
  • Freedom from indignity refers to the promotion of an improved quality of life and enhancement of human welfare that permits people to make choices and seek opportunities that empower them.

From a methodological point of view, ensuring human security at all scales of the society consists of:  preliminary evaluation of the status of the three freedoms and seven dimensions, identification and characterization of risks, definition of solutions with contingency plans by co-creation and co-design, implementation of measures and assessment of their impact.

From a scientific perspective, the process includes a broad range of methods, multiscale and multiphysics models, approaches, data collection, data processing and mining, solvers, knowledge-based, multicriteria decision-making, multipurpose digital platforms and interpretation.


Phoebe Koundouri
Professor, Athens University of Economics and Business & Technical University of Denmark; President, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists; Chair, SDSN Global Climate Hub

Human Security Quantification and Acceleration by Phoebe Koundari


Garry Jacobs
President and CEO, World Academy of Art & Science

Jeffrey Sachs
President, UN SDSN; Director, Center for Sustainable Development, Columbia University

Adrian Bejan
J.A. Jones Distinguished Professor, Duke University

Eden Mamut
Director, Black Sea Universities Network; Professor, Ovidius University

Konstantinos Dellis
Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Piraeus and ATHENA RC

Jonathan Granoff
Adjunct Professor of International Law at Widener University School of Law; President, Global Security Institute; Trustee, WAAS; Permanent Observer of International Anti-Corruption Academy

References –

1) In 2012, the UN General Assembly – made up of more than 190 nations as UN Member States – affirmed a common understanding of human security: “The right of people to live in freedom and dignity, free from poverty and despair. All individuals, in particular vulnerable people, are entitled to freedom from fear and freedom from want, with an equal opportunity to enjoy all their rights and fully develop their human potential.”