Military Drones in Europe: The European Defense Market and the Spread of Military UAV Technology

Dominika Kunertova

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This report provides the critical insights that national
governments and defense companies need in order to
navigate the European military drone landscape and
offers a guide to their strategic planning and investment.
Observing the international proliferation of military
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), also known as drones,
the report puts together a comprehensive overview of
military drones in Europe to conceptualize the diffusion
of UAV technology and the competition dynamics on
the European defense market. This political-strategic
comparative analysis identifies and qualitatively assesses
the key developments in the European military drone
landscape. The report puts forward that despite the
continuing proliferation of military drones in Europe,
significant differences in military drone capabilities persist
among European countries. Importantly, no European
indigenous advanced drone has achieved full operational
capability yet. In this respect, the North Atlantic Treaty
Organization (NATO) and the European Union (EU), each
via its own institutional logic, act as facilitators of the
military technology diffusion through various enabling,
funding, and networking mechanisms. The commercial
sector further animates the European defense market in
the category of smaller UAVs. The next-generation UAV
technology driven by the increasing level of autonomy
and the concepts of manned-unmanned teaming and
swarming, together with the development of counterdrone
systems, will characterize the future drone race on
the European defense market.
The report proceeds in three steps. First, it maps the
military drone capabilities in selected seventeen European
countries with respect to all three main classes of drones:
advanced, tactical, and small. The resulting drone clubs
are based on countries’ procurement strategies and
defense cooperation patterns. Second, the report adds
an institutional layer to the analysis. It assesses the
strengths and weaknesses of both NATO and the EU in
terms of existing institutional channels central to the
development of UAV capability, especially in the context
of the emerging EU-wide regulatory framework and its
growing role in the defense and security domain. Third,
the concluding analysis of future trends in the military
UAV technology further elaborates on drone warfare and
defense cooperation in Europe.
ForlagCenter for War Studies
Antal sider76
StatusUdgivet - 2019


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