Thursday 10 April 2014

SSR Seminar for Exercise 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

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

Monday 27 June 2016

SSR Assessment Group of Ex Common Effort

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

Thursday 01 June 2017

Sensitisation Workshop on SSR

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):

 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:


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 (

 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

Training on Security Sector Reform (SSR)

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