Dr Laurie Nathan is a Visiting Professor at Cranfield University and Senior Researcher at the University of Pretoria. Between 1992 and 2003 he was Executive Director of the Centre for Conflict Resolution at the University of Cape Town.
From 1994 to 2001 Laurie was a policy advisor to the Minister of Defence and the chairperson of the parliamentary defence committee in South Africa. He drafted the White Paper on Defence (1996), the Code of Conduct for the South African National Defence Force (1999) and the defence foreign policy of the Department of Defence (1999). He was a member of the departmental drafting committees responsible for the Defence Review (1998), the Military Discipline Supplementary Measures Act (1999), the White Paper on the South African Defence Related Industries (1999), the Defence Act (2002) and the Armaments Corporation of South Africa Act (2003). From 1995 to 2002 he served on the Civic Education Monitoring and Advisory Committee of the South African Department of Defence. In 2006 the Intelligence Minister appointed him to support the civic education programme for the South African intelligence services.
In 1994 Laurie was appointed by President Mandela to serve on the Cameron Commission of Inquiry into Arms Trade. In 1999-2000 he was an adviser to the Foreign Minister of Swaziland, who was then the Chair of the Inter-State Defence and Security Committee in Southern Africa. Laurie was the principal drafter of the SADC Protocol on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation (2001).
In 2005 Laurie was an adviser to the Palestinian security services and the Ward Mission on the preparation of a Palestinian White Paper on Safety and Security. In 2006 he was a member of the African Union mediation team for Darfur. In 2006-8 he served on the Ministerial Review Commission on Intelligence, established by the South African Minister of Intelligence. In 2009 he was appointed to the UN Roster of SSR Experts.
Laurie has served on a number of academic editorial boards; the International Advisory Board of the Masters Programme in Security Sector Management, Cranfield University; the Carter Centre’s International Council for Conflict Resolution; the Advisory Committee of the Arms Division of Human Rights Watch; the Expert Advisory Group of the UNDP Democratic Governance Practice Network; and the Critical Review Panel of the OECD DAC Handbook on Security System Reform, OECD, 2007.
Laurie is the author of No Ownership, No Commitment: A Guide to Local Ownership of Security Sector Reform , University of Birmingham, 2007.