IOM Security Platform Wins Prestigious Innovation, Partnership Award 

Geneva/Liverpool – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) and CENTRIC at Sheffield Hallam University are pleased to announce that the next-generation intelligent security communications platform, SCAAN (Security Communications and Analysis Network), has been honored with the esteemed International Collaboration of the Year Award by Times Higher Education.  

This prestigious accolade recognizes SCAAN's exceptional innovation and the impactful partnership between CENTRIC and IOM. The platform's cutting-edge technology, developed through collaborative efforts, has demonstrated outstanding contributions to the field of security communications.  

"We are honoured to receive the International Collaboration of the Year Award from Times Higher Education," said Luc Vandamme, IOM’s Director of the Office of Staff Security.   

"SCAAN exemplifies the impact that cross-sector collaboration can have in creating solutions that address real-world issues and provide tangible support to staff working in high-risk contexts."   

Babak Akhgar, Director of CENTRIC, expressed gratitude for the recognition, stating, "This award underscores the power of collaboration in advancing technology and addressing critical security challenges faced by the UN. SCAAN is a testament to what can be achieved when academia and international organizations leverage their combined expertise to deliver impactful solutions."  

The judges praised SCAAN as a "low-cost, high-impact technology" and “a great example of international collaboration making a real difference to people's lives.”. 

The result of tireless research and development, SCANN has proven instrumental in enhancing security communications on a global scale. Its success is a testament to the dedication and expertise of the teams at CENTRIC and IOM.  

The award ceremony, held in Liverpool on Thursday, 7 December, celebrated SCAAN's achievement alongside other outstanding initiatives in the higher education sector. The recognition by Times Higher Education highlights the value of SCAAN as a product of international collaboration and innovation.  

For more information, visit   


About IOM - UN Migration Agency:  

IOM is the leading inter-governmental organization dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. With 175 member states, IOM provides services and advice concerning migration to governments and migrants alike.   

About CENTRIC:  

CENTRIC, the Centre of Excellence in Terrorism, Resilience, Intelligence and Organised Crime Research, is dedicated to advancing research and knowledge in the field of security. Based at Sheffield Hallam University, CENTRIC fosters collaboration between academia, industry, and governmental agencies to address contemporary security challenges.  


Media Contacts:  

Geneva - Amy Rhoades +41 79 701 1679  

Sheffield - Neil Stanwix,