Security Sector Reform and the Management of Defence Expenditure - A Conceptual Framework

This discussion paper stems from growing recognition of the linkages between sustainable development and security. It proposes a conceptual framework for addressing one aspect of security sector governance: the management of defence expenditure.

Specifically, the paper suggests that:

  • an approach based on strengthening the process by which defence expenditure is managed and monitored will be the most effective means of achieving appropriate levels of military expenditure;
  • policies, laws and structures in the security sector will reflect each country’s history, culture, legal framework, and institutions;
  • despite each country’s unique situation, a set of generic public sector management principles exist which should be applied to all components of the public sector, including the security sector, and consequently strengthening governance in the security and non-security portions of the public sector should proceed simultaneously, to the extent possible;
  • the pace and sequencing of efforts to strengthen the management of defence expenditure will vary across countries;
  • efforts to improve the efficiency of defence expenditure management should be set in the broadercontext of security sector reform; and
  • national ownership of the reform process and the strengthening of capacity to manage and oversee the defence sector are essential to ensure sustainability.
  • A number of next steps are proposed for considering the integration of security sector governance and better defence expenditure management into development policy.

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