Other ISSAT-facilitated SSR modules

Course info

In addition to the Level 1 and Level 2 courses, ISSAT offers several customised training packages, workshops, seminars and briefings to suit the specific needs of those requesting them. 

Customised Briefings for Senior Personnel Prior to Deployment (1 day)

ISSAT offers tailored briefings for senior personnel from ISSAT members, ahead of their field deployments. These briefings take place at ISSAT HQ in Geneva and include a mix of face-to-face briefings with senior advisors from the ISSAT core team but also with members of the ISSAT roster via ISSATs video conferencing facilities.

SSR Pre-Deployment Workshop

The international community, through the UN and other multilateral fora, continue to highlight the increasingly important role that the reform of security and justice institutions play in preventing conflict and building peace. A key challenge facing the international community is the need to build capacity, knowledge and awareness of SSR amongst those working in Peace Support Operations environments. This includes not only development actors, but also military and police personnel who are increasingly engaged in ‘reform and re-structuring mandates’, as well as political and diplomatic personnel.

The training, often delivered at Peace Support Operation Training Centres, police or military academies helps participants to:

  • understand the principles and context of SSR;
  • define challenges and opportunities for implementing SSR;
  • identify basic steps and resources for planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating a SSR programmes.

Events and Other Courses Calendar

Each training event, workshop, seminar or briefing listed below provides a space for participants to take advantage of online training tools, surveys and reading materials. Some of the material is private to the participants of the event. If you have not yet been given access rights to a course or event you are participating in, then please contact the event facilitator.

Thursday 10 April 2014

SSR Seminar in advance of Ex Reliable Sword

A three-quarter-day seminar (1100-1700) on basics of SSR for participants of the annual civil-military exercise Reliable Sword.

Target group consists of Captains and Majors of the German and Dutch brigades, as well as staff of NGOs and the MFA of the Netherlands.

The seminar aims to sensitise the target audience about

  • the difficulties of SSR 
  • the importance of civilian oversight and accountability
  • the need for SSR facilitation rather than implementation by external actors.

All participants should take the Introduction to SSR e-learning course prior to attending the event on 10 April. Additional pre-course reading is available in the Documents tab.

Training Event

Thursday 26 February 2015

SSR today and Norway's potential role in the international SSR arena

Aim: This seminar is part of a series of collaborative seminars across government to update on the status, trends, challenges and opportunities for Norway in SSR

0900-1030 – SSR today

A look at the state-of-play of SSR

  • An approach, not just an activity;
  • Where the OECD-DAC countries have taken SSR – their capacities and outlook
  • Trends and challenges in SSR across the international arena

Background reading:

-          Mapping a way forward for Security Sector Reform

-          Is it time to rethink our approach to Security Sector Reform?

1030 – 1100 coffee break

1100-1230 – Improving solutions for SSR

This session will look at the mechanisms in need of development to better support holistic and trans-national governance of the security sector. It will ask participants to workshop how Norway can contribute to and influence these mechanisms, as well as solicit ideas for complementary alternatives.

  • The interplay between external and internal security capacity – how to transition from stabilisation operations to securing peace – how do we develop international, deployable, advisory policing capacity?
  • Regional codes-of-conduct – how to encourage regional mechanisms and capacity to adopt consensual behaviour?
  • Participatory solutions – how to improve civilian capacity and oversight – how to encourage national dialogue, reconciliation, and communication of SSR goals and achievements

1230 – lunch

1315-1500 –  Norway’s niche in the international arena

Guided by the discussions throughout the day and input to them from cross-government participants, this session will look at how Norway can better contribute to the international effort to support SSR in the light of recent trends and developments. This discussion and its outcomes will draw on:

1500 - Wrap-up and way ahead

1530 - Close

(ISSAT facilitators will remain available for individual consultation as necessary)

Training Event

Thursday 30 April 2015

The PSO-SSR Introductory courses (ICPSO) seek to develop key skills and competencies for future field deployment in Peace Support Operations. The main topics to be delivered as part of the course focus on the concept and principles of SSR, the linkages with PSO, SSR in post-conflict contexts, DDR & SSR, PSO, SSR & stabilisation and Governance & SSR. 

DCAF/ISSAT will facilitate a briefing on peace support operations and security sector reform. 

Training Event

Monday 13 July 2015

Design, Monitoring and Evaluation for Peacebuilding, Security and Development

The five-day workshop provides a unique opportunity for practitioners (donors and nationals) working in the field of peacebuilding, security and development (P-S-D) to enhance their programme design skills and their monitoring and evaluation capacity. This intensive training tackles programme cycle planning, theories of change, results-based approaches as well as the practical implementation of monitoring and evaluation process in the most interactive way using simulations and field based case studies. The Application deadline is May 1, 2015. For more information, please click here for the course brochure. 

Training Event

Wednesday 20 May 2015

SSR Academic Seminar at Exercise Common Effort

A morning seminar (0830-1130) providing top level principles and frameworks for security and justice sector reform programming. It will focus specifically on defence reform, defence institution capacity building and the military contribution to security and justice sector reform.

Target group: Colonels and above at 1 German-Netherlands Corps (1GNC), as well as civil servant equivalents, and staff of NGOs and civil-society organisations.

The seminar aims to:

  • Provide an awareness of the concept of SSR,
  • Provide an overview of the policy frameworks of various international organisations
  • Show linkages with peace enforcement, peace-support operations, peace-keeping operations and stabilisation operations.
  • Discuss roles of the military within the concept ofSSR concept, including at the planning process, and in train and equip endeavours or security force assistance (SFA)

Participants will benefit considerably if they can browse the Introduction to SSR e-learning course prior to attending the seminar. The training manual for the e-learning, entitled SSR in a Nutshell , will be available in hard copy at the seminar. Additional pre-course reading is available to download in the Documents tab (login required after assignment to the seminar, including the latest study drafts of NATO UNCLASSIFIED doctrines on 'Security Force Assistance' and 'Military Support to Stabilization and Reconstruction').

Further information of interest:

Training Event

Tuesday 18 August 2015

SSR in Peace Support Operations Training 

The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has mandated DCAF/ ISSAT to conduct an introductory training on Security Sector Reform and Peace Support Operations (SSR-PSO) at the Bangladesh Institute for Peace Support Operations Training (BIPSOT). The main objective of the course is to enhance participants’ knowledge on SSR so to enhance their performance when deployed to UN missions.

The training will take place in Dhaka, Bangladesh from 18-20 August 2015 and bring together up to 25 military, police and civilian peacekeepers from Bangladesh and abroad, especially from the Asia Pacific Regions.

The 3-day training will focus on the fundamentals of SSR including key characteristics, actors and the international policy framework. It will also focus on SSR in post-conflict contexts and linkages with peace support operations. Cross-cutting issues such as gender, governance and coordination will also be addressed.

Training Event

Monday 03 August 2015

Inter-American Development Bank Training

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has been the first multilateral institution to support citizen security loans in Latin American and the Caribbean and to promote a violence prevention approach as a part of the governments’ agendas.To complement the existing loan mechanisms, the IDB created in 2012 the Citizen Security Initiative (CSI) with funds from the ordinary capital of the Bank. The CSI is an essential tool, complementary to the technical and financial support the Bank offers to its members, to improve the development, management and evaluation of public policies in the citizen security sector. Citizen security is currently a priority or dialogue area in the strategies of 14 of the 26 IDB beneficiary countries. At least other 3 countries had citizen security in previous country strategies and there are loan operations in 17 countries. The reach of technical cooperation is even broader: there are 42 projects in implementation and/or pipeline funded by the CSI.

Against this backdrop, the IDB is organising a two-day workshop (3-4 August) in Washington DC on justice and security sector reform (JSSR). This workshop, supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), will be delivered by ISSAT.

The aim of the workshop is to update IDB in analysing evolving conflicts in countries that are affected by violence and to better understand the instruments available in context analysis. It will bring together 25 participants from the IDB, SDC and partner countries.

The course aims to build both JSSR knowledge and skills. Through an interactive and practical training approach, this course will help participants to:

  • Better understand and identify the root causes and appearances of insecurities  in the Latin-American and Caribbean (LAC) context;
  • Develop the basic skills required to undertake JSSR programming with a results based approach;
  • Use concrete cases to build on lessons learned and apply concepts to practice from the LAC context
Training Event

Monday 02 November 2015

From 2 -6 November, the German Armed Forces Command and Staff College (Führungsakademie der Bundeswehr) are conducting a seminar on “Operational Thinking” for senior staff officers. Three of the issues to be addressed are

  1. Protection of Civilian
  2. Humanitarian Action/Assistance
  3. Security Sector Reform

Discussions and syndicate work will investigate the actual challenges of these three themes and the role of the military in it. 

The syndicate output will then later be integrated in a comprehensive approach to resolve the scenario crisis.

For the syndicate work on Tuesday (03 Nov), the Führungsakademie has requested Subject Matter Experts to assist in order to ensure the required depth of discussions and output. 


There are two e-learning courses which are of use for military operational thinking in SSR:

The second e-learning might be of more use after the seminar as a means of reinforcement. The current version has a number of videos from the United State Institute for Peace, which have a heavy US defence focus in Afghanistan.

Further pre-seminar preparation is available in the Documents tab below:

Training Event

Monday 11 July 2016

Results-Based Management for Peacebuilding, Security and Development Training 

Application period is now closed

Results-Based Management for Peacebuilding, Security and Development Training From 11-15 July, the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces’ International Security Sector Advisory Team (DCAF/ISSAT), together with the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD), the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) and the Small Arms Survey (SAS), in partnership with the International Programme for Development Evaluation Training (IPDET) is organising a five-day training workshop on Results-Based Management for Peacebuilding, Security and Development Training.

The five-day workshop provides a unique opportunity for practitioners (donors, internationals and nationals) working in the field of peacebuilding, security and development to be introduced to programme results-based management, design, and monitoring and evaluation skills. This intensive training tackles programme cycle planning, theories of change, results-based approaches as well as the practical implementation of monitoring and evaluation processes using simulations and field based case studies.

The workshop includes the following five modules:
 • Module 1: Project cycle management and project design
 • Module 2: Monitoring
 • Module 3: Theory of Change
 • Module 4: Evaluation Questions and design
 • Module 5: Data collection methods

The workshop is aimed at national development, peace and security officials, representatives from local and international development, political and security agencies, and technical advisors/programme officers nominated by the UN and other relevant agencies. The workshop is designed especially for those with no specific training in results-based management.

Training Event

Monday 27 June 2016

The main objective of the yearly Common Effort exercises is to develop and improve comprehensive thinking and working by learning from each other in direct interaction and exchanges of perspectives from a wide range of actors. Each year a complex, realistic situation is selected to exercise the comprehensive approach.

This year’s tasking is to perform a Joint Assessment along six assessment themes

(1) Protection of civilians assessment;
(2) Security Sector Reform assessment
(3) Good Governance assessment;
(4) Humanitarian assessment;
(5) Economic/Private Sector assessment;
(6) Strategic (/regional) assessment

The Joint Assessment is directed toward analysing and understanding the local conditions for stability, supplemented with regional factors.

ISSAT will co-facilitate the SSR theme.

Suggested pre-reading or preparation for this course include:

Copies of some of this material will be available during the exercise.

Training Event

Monday 03 July 2017

7th International Workshop

Policy-makers and practitioners in the field of peacebuilding, security and development still lack critical skills in RBM. This five-day workshop, now in its 7th edition, provides a thorough grounding in the discipline, covering programme cycle planning, theories of change, results-based approaches as well as the practical implementation of monitoring and evaluation processes using simulations and field-based case studies.



This course is designed for practitioners in the fields of peacebuilding, security and development, including:

  • national development, peace and security officials, representatives from local and international development, political and security agencies
  • technical advisors/programme officers from UN and other relevant agencies
  • key policy makers from violence-affected countries
  • officials from security and development agencies from donor countries
  • independent experts and specialists in the peace sector

Participants should have experience working with projects/programmes in the security and development sectors. The needs of individuals from both public and non-governmental institutions will be addressed.

Application process

To apply to the training, please fill out the following RBM for Peacebuilding, Security and Development form and email it to  Ms Silvia Metzler, Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) s.metzler@gcsp.ch

DCAF/ISSAT Point of Contact: 

For any questions, inquires or concerns, please contact Antoine Hanin, DCAF/ISSAT; a.hanin@dcaf.ch 

Additional Information:

For additional reading material including the RBM for Peacebuilding, Security and Development Brochure, please refer to the documents tab on the left side of the page.

Training Event

Thursday 01 June 2017

The international community is increasingly focused on the challenges of insecurity and conflict as a barrier to political, economic and social development. It is clear that if states are to create the condition in which they can escape from a downward spiral wherein insecurity, criminalisation and under-development are mutually reinforcing, socio-economic and security dimensions must be tackled simultaneously.

The traditional concept of security is being redefined to include not only the security of states but also a clear focus on the safety and wellbeing of their peoples With the recognition that security and development are inextricably linked, this has resulted in greater focus and scrutiny of how security and justice are provided in countries. Security Sector Reform (SSR) has now become a central component of efforts to overcome the cycle of conflict and the causes of fragility, from Sudan to Sierra Leone and from the Honduras to the Solomon Islands.

However, a key challenge faced by actors supporting the implementation is to ensure that the necessary capacity is available. The reform of security and justice institutions is both a political and technical exercise, and often takes place against a background of resistance to change. It requires expertise in a number of disciplines, and a diverse mix of skills and knowledge. Above all, it demands sensitivity to the need for a coherent, coordinated institutional approach that will help translate SSR policy into effective programmes on the ground. It is for this reason that the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in collaboration with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and the European Union (EU) will conduct a Training on Security Sector Reform (SSR) from 1-2 June 2017 in Brussels, Belgium.  

 The workshop will take place at the Permanent Representation of the Netherlands to the EU (Kortenberglaan 4-10, 1040 Brussels) and will be conducted in collaboration with the International Security Sector Advisory Team of the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF/ ISSAT).

 Through a combination of practical, hands-on exercises, this workshop will aim to enhance the skills, capacity and strategic thinking of participants on SSR principles through the sharing of views and experiences related to SSR. It will highlight issues such as the principles and characteristics of SSR, enhancing governance and oversight of security and justice institutions, the linkages between justice and police reform and sustainable capacity building.

 Throughout the workshop, participants are encouraged to engage in the collective sharing of experience and reflections on specific topics. Participants will be exposed to many of the tools and techniques used by SSR practitioners on the ground. Focusing on practical exercises and case studies, this workshop will help participants understand the challenges relating to SSR and help elaborate possible solutions to common roadblocks.

 Key objectives of the workshop include:

  • Build a practical understanding around the concept and key characteristics (1-2-3) of SSR, based on debate and discussions, exercises and case studies;
    • Improve understanding on the interlinkages between the various components of SSR including justice, police and defence reform;
    • Explore opportunities for adopting a comprehensive approach to SSR within and between key international actors;
    • Engage in dialogue and experience sharing with fellow participants, facilitators and external experts. 

 Target audience

This advanced training is aimed at middle to senior level military, police and civilian personnel engaged in SSR support activities within NATO and the EU. More specifically, selected candidates will be working closely on issues related to Justice and Security Sector Reform such as governance, rule of law, police reform, defence reform, justice reform, disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration etc. The workshop also targets those involved in programming, programme management, mission conduct and planning and/or in political/policy dialogue.

 Language and selection

Since English will be the working language of the workshop, participants must have a good command of English in order to be able to engage in discussions and fully benefit from the training. The workshop is designed in a modular structure, thus participants are expected to attend the entire workshop. It is important for participants to meet these requirements in order to fully benefit from the workshop.


All selected candidates are required to have successfully completed an introductory course on SSR. This course can be completed online by registering onto DCAF/ISSAT’s website (top right): http://issat.dcaf.ch/Learn/E-Learning/Introduction-to-Security-Sector-Reform

 Upon acceptance into the workshop, it is required that all participants complete a pre-course questionnaire. The deadline for the Pre-Course Questionnaire is Friday, 26 May 2017. The questionnaire can be access on the Training Space or accessed directly via the following link: https://goo.gl/forms/TcjHkeCoNmCV60mP2


The workshop will use interactive, co-learning methodology aimed at encouraging participants to share knowledge and experience with each other, and to adopt a problem-solving approach through a series of hands-on practical exercises, case studies, simulations and group activities. Participants are expected to contribute actively during the workshop.  

 Costs of Participation

There will be no course fee.


Application Process

This workshop is only open for EU, and NATO applicants.

To apply for the workshop, please send your CV and a short motivation letter to the following point of contact on or before 15 May 2017: Ms Liza de Nijs (liza-de.nijs@minbuza.nl).

 General Information

Selected participants will be informed shortly after the close of applications. A pre-workshop questionnaire will be sent to the selected applicants. This will enable the workshop organisers to better understand participant expectations and experience and thereby ensure that the workshop meets participant expectations. 

Training Event

Tuesday 13 June 2017

The Dutch National Defence Academy will conduct a “Training on Security Sector Reform (SSR)” from 13-15 June 2017 in Breda, the Netherlands. This three-day intensive residential course will be carried out in collaboration with the International Security Sector Advisory Team (ISSAT) of the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). Through a combination of practical, hands-on exercises, this advanced course will aim to enhance the skills, capacity and strategic thinking of participants on SSR principles through the sharing of views and experiences in SSR trends and practice. It will highlight issues such as the principles and characteristics of SSR, enhancing governance and oversight of security and justice institutions, the linkages between justice and police reform and the development of national security strategies and examine the. military role on SSR as well as SSR implications for defence engagement.

Training Event