Non-state Oversight Actors

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Tools

Civil Society Oversight of the Security Sector and Gender (Tool 9)

This tool is designed to be a resource for civil society organisations (CSOs) engaged in oversight of the security sector, as well as those CSOs that seek to play a more active role in this regard.

The tool is also relevant for policymakers and officials in national governments, international and regional organisations, and donor countries around the world that are engaged in designing and implementing security sector reforms and that could play an active role in strengthening and supporting civil society engagement.

The tool includes:

- A description of the role of civil society in oversight mechanisms
- The rationale behind the inclusion of gender issues and ways in which this can strengthen and enhance oversight
- Entry points for incorporating gender into different aspects of civil society oversight, including practical tips and examples
- An overview of integrating gender into civil society oversight in post-conflict, transitional, developing and developed countries

See this page for more information on The GSSR Toolkit and the full range of "Tools" and "Practice Notes."

Tool

Videos

Introduction to SSR

This presentation gives a background on the theory behind the concept Security Sector Reform, as well as an overview of the international efforts within SSR today.

Folke Bernadotte Academy
Video

Empowerment for Progress - civil society engagement in SSR

Edmond Yakani, coordinator of the Empowerment for Progress in South Sudan, discusses the role of civil society in security sector reform. He shares experience from interacting with members of the security sector, executive and legislature. He discusses how to effectively manage these relationships and dynamics of reform. He also provides insight into how civil society in South Sudan handles gender in the security sector by capitalizing on quality rather than quantity.  

Video

Policy and Research Papers

Improving Security and Justice Through Local/Non-State Actors

Local/non‐state actors often play an important role in the provision of justice and security services in many of the world’s fragile and (post‐)conflict countries. With a view to improving their effectiveness, donors seeking to support justice and security development in thosecountries frequently look for ways to incorporate them in their programmes. However, given that non‐state actors can also be detrimental to local security and justice (for example when they form part of organized crime), supporting them also involves huge risks. With this dilemma in mind, the Clingendael Institute’s Conflict Research Unit investigated conceptual, policy and practical opportunities and challenges for including local/non‐state security and justice networks in security and justice programming. The project consisted of a conceptual desk‐study; case studies in Colombia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Burundi; and a synthesis phase focusing on the lessons learned from the project, complemented by an expert brainstorm meeting, on the practical issues that donors must deal with if they are to successfully include local/non‐state actors in security and justice programmes.The present report summarizes the findings from this synthesis effort. It concludes that in each of the cases examined, it was possible to identify local/non‐state actors suitable for support and ways to support them. They included actors such as local courts, lay judges, neighbourhood watch groups, community development councils, and trade associations. However, the research also identified a number of practical risks and challenges that donors need to manage and overcome in order to ensure that such actors are included effectively into broader, overall security and justice programmes.

Paper

Liberal Chiefs or Illiberal Development? The Challenge of Engaging Chiefs in DFID’s Security Sector Reform Programme in Sierra Leone

It is increasingly recognised that informal actors, including chiefs, are dominant providers of services and need to be factored into overwhelmingly state-focused programmes. This article looks at the ability of the UK’s Department for International Development to engage with the chieftaincy system in Sierra Leone through its security sector reform programme − a relationship which poses important political challenges.

To view this publication, please follow this link.

Paper

Towards a Non-State Security Sector Reform Strategy

This paper outlines a comprehensive strategy for engaging non-state actors in security sector reform (SSR) by synthesizing the emerging literature on this approach and developing new conceptual tools to advance policy and practice. It explains when and why non-state security providers should be engaged in reform, outlines what such an approach would aim to achieve, provides tools with which to understand who such actors really are, then clarifies how international actors could pursue such a strategy. It then considers six outstanding challenges and uncertainties surrounding a non-state SSR strategy and, ultimately, argues that non-state engagement is a viable and attractive approach to SSR that merits further research and serious policy-making consideration.

For full access to the report Towards a Non-State Security Sector Reform Strategy, kindly follow the link.

Paper

Addressing Security and Human rights challenges in complex environments

This Toolkit is part of a joint DCAF-ICRC project that draws on the experience of the two organisations in order to support companies and other actors facing security and human rights challenges in complex environments. 

As part of this project, DCAF and the ICRC have also developed a Knowledge Hub. While the Toolkit and the Knowledge Hub are intended to have a wide application beyond the extractives sector, they were developed to reflect the commitment of both organisations as official Observers to the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights (VPs).

In order to read, Addressing Security and Human rights challenges in complex environments, please follow the link.

Paper