The 4th European Civil Protection Forum organised by the European Commission's Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO) took place on 15-16 May 2013, following successful editions in 2002, 2007 and 2009. It was attended by more than 700 participants from EU countries and beyond. The Forum focused on how governments and civil society can work together to create stronger, better and more efficient disaster prevention, preparedness and response policies in the EU and worldwide. Decision-makers and civil protection experts exchanged views about disaster risk management, financing, response planning and coordination, solidarity and responsibility as well as prospects for the future. Besides various panels and plenary debates, an exhibition showing innovative technologies, modules, as well as the work of training centres and international partners was organized. The opening of the Forum was preceded by the official opening of the new Emergency Response Coordination Centre, the European Commission's central platform for disaster response.