IFREI's raison d'être is the prevention of risks (accidental or intentional) and the reduction of conflictualities*. IFREI develops and promotes the cindynical methodology, which has the particularity of putting humans back at the heart of danger and prevention issues: beyond technical aspects, the cindynical approach to prevention is primarily organizational and based on strategic thinking, and seeks operational efficiency.
Initially, IFREI focused on intangible risks, and in particular on the risks that were emerging due to the development of information and communication technologies, information societies and "cyberspace", which is currently being militarized. Focused on organizational aspects, the cindynical approach was ideally suited to the field of intangible risks. Therefore, IFREI had to extend the cindynical models to specifically consider conflicting situations: this led to supplement the concepts of vulnerability reduction and resilience building with the notions of friction phenomena and conflictuality reduction.
These developments lead to extend the field of use of Cindynics beyond the strict risk prevention domain: rigorous modeling of conflictuality makes it possible to use the cindynical methodology in the field of conflict prevention and in that of conflicituality reduction. Moreover, the concept of conflictuality covers in practice a continuum, which includes weak conflictualities and divergences which degrade the efficiency of development actions. The cindynical methodology is therefore twice useful for development: on the one hand because it prevents human or environmental damages too often associated with development actions, and on the other hand due to its ability to reduce friction phenomena and improve operational efficiencies.
Following a first stage mainly devoted to methodological tools development and modeling activities, IFREI is now involved in the promotion and dissemination of the cindynical methodology and in prevention capacity building in sub-Saharan Africa, where life expectancy is the lowest in the world.
* conflictualities being defined as propensities of situation to degenerate into conflicts.