Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
Comments from Mark Downes, Head of ISSAT, to open the Panel Discussion on SSR in West Africa and to introduce the panel members.
ISSAT Senior SSR Advisor sheds light in this video on the main characteristics and competencies that SSR Advisors need to have inorder to carry out their activities efficiently. Besides the technical skills that are needed in any SSR Advisor, Bgen(ret) Belondrade, shares his real-life experience on what competencies he had to develop to undertake advisory activities to high level authorities on SSR.
What are the "politics of SSR" and how could these dynamics be managed? Bgen(ret) Bernard Belondrade shares with ISSAT Community members the experience of a training workshop where this aspect was predominant in how the trainees reacted to the knowledge shared with them.
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.
Considering the role of women in SSR in post-conflict Somalia: An interview with Hanan Ibrahim, CSO Representative for the African Initiative for Women. The questions asked during the interview can be found below.
1. What is the importance of gender in SSR?
2. Are Somali women becoming more involved in SSR decision making ?
3. Why do Somali women need to strengthen their position in the SSR process ?
4. What would you like to see in the future in Somalia?
Policy and Research Papers
A Brenthurst discussion paper (2012/01) tackling the case of South Sudan six months on from achieving statehood. South Sudan is facing serious challenges: economic warfare with Sudan, the emergence of Cashmir-like scenarios on their border and renewed internecine conflicts within its own territory. None of these threats were unforeseen by the African Union or the wider international community in the months and years leading up to independence. In some respects, how the new state of South Sudan would address these issues could either soften the firm stance against changing Africa's borders or cement international opinion against any further 'balkanisation' of Africa.
This Discussion Paper considers whether South Sudan's secession has made independence more likely for other would-be states in Africa, from Somaliland to Cabinda. Based on extensive discussions between senior policy makers and academics at a high-level workshop convened by the Brenthurst Foundation in collaboration with the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in September 2011, as well as additional research, the Paper argues that Africa's borders are likely to remain stubbornly resistant to change despite Sudan's historic split - and this stance has likely only been reinforced by South Sudan's troubled start. Although the South Sudan case is likely to remain an exception rather than a precedent, the Arab Spring is a salutary reminder, if any was needed, that events have a way of building on themselves. For all the powerful constraints on secession highlighted in this Paper, the much-feared balkanisation of Africa must never be dismissed as fanciful.
The idea of self-determination is not on the wane in Africa - South Sudan's long struggle will surely embolden existing secessionist groups and may inspire new movements - but the obstacles to independent statehood appear as formidable as ever.
The improper management of conventional ammunition and explosives poses significant safety and security risks. Frequent ammunition depot explosions and diversions from ammunition stocks of state actors testify to the relevance of the issue to Africa. Overcoming challenges to effective national ammunition management can be a formidable task in itself. This paper considers the challenges to and scope for action on ammunition management in Africa. It is argued that concerted efforts by African states and their international partners will be essential to effectively limiting risks of undesirable explosive events and ammunition diversions on the continent.
This report analyses the changing attitudes towards public safety and the provision of security and justice in Nepal. It presents the fourth in a series of surveys conducted by Saferworld and Nepali partner organisation, Interdisciplinary Analysts, to track public perceptions of security and justice over time.
The latest report, ‘A safer future? Tracking security improvements in an uncertain context’, builds on the findings of the earlier surveys and analyses the results of a nationwide household survey (3,000 respondents), in-depth interviews and desk research.
The report finds that Nepali people’s perception of their day-to-day security has increased. The upward trend in confidence in the Nepal Police remarked upon in previous surveys has reached a plateau but remains high. There are still visible weaknesses in state security and justice provision and access to services remains a problem for many. Yet the Nepal Police, in particular, are thought to be more representative of women and all ethnic/caste groups than before. However, the improvement in people’s perceptions of their daily security is offset by heightened anxiety about the macro-political context. Nepali people are increasingly pessimistic about the direction in which the country is going and the lack of national stability and political consensus is undermining their confidence in political leaders to maintain law and order.
The report makes a series of recommendations requiring the input and support of a range of actors from government, the security and justice sector, national and international non-governmental organisations (I/NGOs), the media, academia and think tanks, the wider civil society, the private sector and the international community.
Read the report
"A Common Approach for Building International Capacity to Support SJSR" is the title of ISSAT's second High Level Panel (HLP), organised on May 19th, 2011. ISSAT hosted its HLP discussion in Brussels, Belgium with the focus on the increasing need for establishing the right balance of technical, methodological and contextual expertise within SSR interventions.
The basis for the HLP topic was the recognition that the number of SSR mandates within Peace Support Operations (PSO) and crisis management operations has increased over the past years. In parallel, the demand for SSR and rule of law advisors who combine specialist knowledge with a solid understanding of the politics involved in reform processes has increased.
At present, many bilateral and multilateral donors face serious capacity gaps when it comes to having readily-available and deployable personnel with SSR experience and expertise. Security and justice reform requires a multi-disciplinary response: it requires personnel with an understanding of the political nature of SSR and the importance of accountability to a legitimate authority, coupled with those who have a technical understanding of how, for example, a police service, the military, the courts system and the various ministries function.
The panel who addressed these issues were:
- Mr. Richard Wright, Director Conflict Prevention & Security Policy, European External Action Service (EEAS)
- Mr. Cedric de Coning, Advisor to ACCORD and NUPI and Author of the Study on Civilian Capacities within the Non-governmental Civilian Roster Community
- Mr Mika-Markus Leinonen, Director, Civcom Chair, European External Action Service (EEAS)
- General Juan Estaban (by video), Former Head of the EU SSR Mission in Guinea Bissau
In the year since the revolution, Tunisia has achieved what no other Arab Spring country has managed: peaceful transition to democratic rule through national elections widely viewed to be free and fair. The legacy of the previous regime, however, remains. Dr. Querine Hanlon assesses the prospects for Security Sector Reform (SSR) in Tunisia and concludes that Tunisia’s new government faces major challenges dismantling and reorienting the mandate and institutional culture of Tunisia’s labyrinth of security institutions. Serious SSR will be critical for building trust in the new governments and its security institutions and essential if Tunisia’s transition to democratic rule is to succeed in the long term.
Criminal Justice and Rule of Law Capacity Building to Counter Terrorism in Fragile Institutional Contexts: Lessons From Development Cooperation
Rule of law–based criminal justice responses to terrorism are most effectively ensured when they are practiced within a criminal justice system capable of handling ordinary criminal offenses while protecting the rights of the accused and when all are equally accountable under the law. Building the capacity of weak criminal justice systems to safeguard mutual rights and responsibilities of governments and their citizens is essential for the alleviation of a number of conditions conducive to violent extremism and the spread of terrorism. A new wave of multilateral counterterrorism initiatives has the opportunity to recalibrate how criminal justice and rule of law–oriented counterterrorism capacity-building assistance is delivered to developing states with weak institutions.
This policy brief argues that aligning counterterrorism capacity-building agendas within a framework informed by the Paris Principles and the development cooperation experience could greatly enhance the effectiveness and sustainability of criminal justice and rule of law capacity-building assistance in general and in preventing terrorism specifically.
Post-conflict peacebuilding demands concerted efforts from all stakeholders to ensure its success; particularly, civil society must complement the capacity of the conflict-weary state. A successful peacebuilding, however, requires a harmonious relationship between the state and civil society. This paper analyses state-civil society relations at different phases of Liberia’s protracted post-conflict peacebuilding process. The paper argues that civil society groups have played and continue to play important role in the peacebuilding process in Liberia and therefore need the support of the Liberian state and the international community to continue their watchdog role. The paper concludes by drawing lessons from the Liberian experience for other post-conflict states.
The Kenya National Dialogue and Reconciliation - Building a Progressive Kenya - Our Common Vision: Vision of Stakeholders
This document reflects the discussions of the “Kenya National Dialogue and Reconciliation: Building a Progressive Kenya” conference, which took place in Nairobi on 5 – 6 December, 2011. Held in the aftermath of a process of nationwide dialogue and at the invitation of the AU Panel of Eminent African Personalities, various stakeholder groups representing a wide cross-section of views and perspectives of Kenyan society participated at this conference so as to coalesce these views around the implementation of the objectives and goals of the KNDR process
The National Dialogue, co-hosted by the Liberian Transitional Government and UNMIL, brings together all statutory security agencies of Liberia to help address the critical problem of Security Reform, which is attributed to the main causes of the Liberian conflict. This report summarizes the discussions that took place among these stakeholders
The report, produced by Isabel Vogel and commissioned by the DFID evaluation division,considers the current uses and definitions of Theory of Change (ToC). A methodology which maps the assumptions which inform planned interventions within all stages of an initiative, ToC is increasingly regarded as an essential tool in designing and appreciating the complex network of factors which influence project outcomes.The review considers the practical aspects of ToC implementation and to develop a more consistent approach which is gaining in reputation and use within the international development community.
Vogel acknowledges that lack of consensus exists around the specific definition of ToC. The review highlights the necessity for flexibility in developing a successful ToC. Through consideration of different approaches, outlining examples of ToC in practice within the appendix, Vogel identifies and draws together a short list of the core elements, generally agreed upon as essential requirements for any discussion centred on theory of change. The review further examines the most effective means of establishing a logical pathway to desired outcomes using the ToC model. Vogel highlights the need to establish ToC as an ongoing process developed alongside all phases of a programme from inception to impact evaluation and emphasises that assumptions should be made explicit within the organising framework of a project.
ToC, as the review makes clear, has the potential to provide an invaluable framework for discussion and critical thinking surrounding project implementation and evaluation. It allows for subjective analysis to be discussed and represented, through diagrams and visuals, which can in turn support more dynamic exchange between policy actors, grantees and donors.
For full report, http://www.dfid.gov.uk/r4d/pdf/outputs/mis_spc/DFID_ToC_Review_VogelV7.pdf
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The aim of this issue paper is to provide some ideas regarding how best to create suitable conditions for security sector reform (SSR) in DRC. Throughout the last decade, SSR has become a key component of the international agenda in states affected by conflict. There is a growing consensus amongst donors regarding the necessity of implementing SSR for effective stabilization and reconstruction. Since 2003, this has resulted in DRC in several donor-supported initiatives to strengthen the police, military, and justice sectors. Although some of these efforts may have initially shown must promise, progress on SSR in DRC remains very limited.
The Security Sector Governance (SSG) Programme of the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) conducted baseline studies of the security sector in six Southern African countries, namely Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Lesotho, Mozambique, South Africa and Zimbabwe, as well as the Southern African Development Community’s Organ on Politics, Defence and Security (SADC Organ). The results of this research are reflected in this monograph.
This issue of the CIGI Security Sector Reform Monitor: Haiti analyses the programming shift undertaken by MINUSTAH and some donors from a traditional DDR to
a violence reduction approach, underlining the problems of coordination and knowledge sharing that emerged.
The meaningful participation of beneficiaries in aid programmes directed to human rights reform is crucial to their success. Their views on ways to improve them deserve serious attention. In interviews with beneficiaries in four countries we were told that aid for reform has had an impact. In the justice sector (the focus of our study) foreign
aid has facilitated constitutional development and legislative reforms and helped expand civil society and transform the justice system. Aid programmes have helped introduce human rights concepts into public consciousness and public institutions in societies where such notions were once seen as subversive.
We were also told that human rights assistance can be wasteful and even do harm. Badly conceived and implemented programmes have sheltered repressive regimes from scrutiny, wasted vital resources and distorted domestic institutions. Donors sometimes promote inappropriate models and put their foreign policy interests before human rights. They can be unreliable partners, subject to quick fixes and too much attention on “exit strategies”. Success depends on many factors, not least paying more attention to local perspectives. This report sets out some of the main issues. It offers signposts that we hope will be useful to both donors and beneficiaries looking for ways
to strengthen the impact of human rights assistance.