As part of a new series in a joint ISIS DCAF project, "Communicate, Coordinate and Cooperate: the A-Z of Cohering EU Crisis Management in the post-Lisbon Era", this first paper highlights some major operational challenges that hinder Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) mission planners and field personnel from effectively implementing security sector reform (SSR) missions. Member States have launched thirteen SSR missions without mustering the political will to supply sufficient adequately-trained personnel, money and equipment.
Member States must decide on whether or not they want the EU to become a viable international actor in the field of SSR. If so, they must clearly prioritise future CSDP missions in order not to waste scarce resources through mere flag raising exercises. Therefore, and in addition to addressing the operational needs mentioned above, the EU needs to agree on an SSR strategy in the EAS which would clarify the concrete criteria for intervention as well as objectives to be achieved in the framework of SSR-related CSDP missions.