The UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16 calls for the establishment of peaceful, just and inclusive societies. The security sector can either contribute to or detract from SDG16 and parliaments play a role in directing the sector’s impact. The Covid-19 pandemic affected parliamentary operations globally during a time of increased security force utilisation in response to the pandemic. This study reviews the use of the security sector in South Africa, the Philippines and the UK during the first year of the pandemic as well as parliamentary responses. To ensure security sector contribution to SDG16, the study identifies the need for rapid parliamentary reaction to security sector utilisation, especially in cases of extraordinary deployments.Book Details
This Security Sector Reform (SSR) Paper offers a universal and analytical perspective on the linkages between Security Sector Governance (SSG)/SSR (SSG/R) and Sustainable Development Goal-16 (SDG-16), focusing on conflict and post-conflict settings as well as transitional and consolidated democracies. Against the background of development and security literatures traditionally maintaining separate and compartmentalized presence in both academic and policymaking circles, it maintains that the contemporary security- and development-related challenges are inextricably linked, requiring effective measures with an accurate understanding of the nature of these challenges. In that sense, SDG-16 is surely a good step in the right direction. After comparing and contrasting SSG/R and SDG-16, this SSR Paper argues that human security lies at the heart of the nexus between the 2030 Agenda of the United Nations (UN) and SSG/R. To do so, it first provides a brief overview of the scholarly and policymaking literature on the development-security nexus to set the background for the adoption of The Agenda 2030. Next, it reviews the literature on SSG/R and SDGs, and how each concept evolved over time. It then identifies the puzzle this study seeks to address by comparing and contrasting SSG/R with SDG-16. After making a case that human security lies at the heart of the nexus between the UN’s 2030 Agenda and SSG/R, this book analyses the strengths and weaknesses of human security as a bridge between SSG/R and SDG-16 and makes policy recommendations on how SSG/R, bolstered by human security, may help achieve better results on the SDG-16 targets. It specifically emphasizes the importance of transparency, oversight, and accountability on the one hand, and participative approach and local ownership on the other. It concludes by arguing that a simultaneous emphasis on security and development is sorely needed for addressing the issues under the purview of SDG-16.Book Details
The main argument is that improving migrants’ rights and conceptual linkages between SSG/R and migration is best achieved, by decentring our gaze, namely going beyond the ‘national’ and ‘state-centric’ view that characterizes traditionally SSG/R and to consider the agency of both migrants and SSR actors. First from a migrants’ perspective, it is key for SSR actors to go beyond traditional legal classifications and to consider the diversity of personal situations that involve refugees, stranded migrants and asylum seekers, which might endorse different roles at different times of their journeys and lives. Second, the transnational nature of migration calls for a transnationalization of SSG/R too. For too long the concept has mostly been applied within the national setting of SSR institutions and actors. Migration calls for a clear decentring that involves a transnational dimension and more work among transnational actors and policymakers to facilitate a norm transfer from the domestic to the interstate and international level. As such, the ‘transnational’ nature of migration and its governance needs to be ‘domesticated’ within the national context in order to change the mindset of SSG/R actors and institutions.
More importantly, the paper argues that poor SSG/R at home produces refugees and incentivizes migrants to leave their countries after being victims of violence by law enforcement and security services. During migrants’ complex and fragmented journeys, good security sector governance is fundamental to address key challenges faced by these vulnerable groups. I also argue that a better understanding of migrants’ and refugees’ security needs is beneficial and central to the good governance of the security sector.
After reviewing the key terms of migration and its drivers in section 2, section 3 reviews how SSG is part of the implementation of the GCM. SSR actors play a role in shaping migratory routes and refugees’ incentives to leave, in explaining migrants’ and refugees’ resilience, in protecting migrants and refugees, and in providing security. Although it cautions against artificial classifications and the term of ‘transit migration’, section 4 reviews what the core challenges are in the countries of origin, transit and destination. Section 5 provides a detailed overview of the linkages between migration and each security actor: the military, police forces, intelligence services, border guards, interior ministries, private actors, criminal justice, parliaments, independent oversight bodies and civil society. Section 6 formulates some recommendations.Book Details
While widely considered a core pillar of the peace and security architecture, Security Sector Reform (SSR) is coming under fire. SSR theory and practice are criticized for being overly focused on traditional conflict and post-conflict settings and for being unable to adjust to unconventional settings marked by chronic crime and terrorism. SSR tends to be disproportionately focused on national institutions and less amenable to engaging at the subnational scale. Drawing on the experiences of so-called ‘citizen security’ measures in cities across Latin America and the Caribbean, this paper offers some opportunities for renewing and revitalizing SSR. The emphasis of citizen security interventions on multiple forms of insecurity, data-driven and evidence-informed prevention, the promotion of social cohesion and efficacy and designing crime prevention into the social and built environment are all insights that can positively reinforce comprehensive SSR measures in the 21st century.Book Details
Community policing has often been promoted, particularly in liberal democratic societies, as the best approach to align police services with the principles of good security sector governance (SSG). The stated goal of the community policing approach is to reduce fear of crime within communities, and to overcome mutual distrust between the police and the communities they serve by promoting police citizen partnerships. This SSR Paper traces the historical origins of the concept of community policing in Victorian Great Britain and analyses the processes of transfer, implementation, and adaptation of approaches to community policing in Imperial and post-war Japan, Singapore, and Timor-Leste. The study identifies the factors that were conducive or constraining to the establishment of community policing in each case. It concludes that basic elements of police professionalism and local ownership are necessary preconditions for successfully implementing community policing according to the principles of good SSG. Moreover, external initiatives for community policing must be more closely aligned to the realities of the local context.Book Details
Security sector reform (SSR) and small arms and lights weapons (SALW) reduction and control programmes have become staples of peacebuilding policy and practice in fragile, failed and conflict-affected states (FFCAS). There is wide agreement in the peacebuilding field that the two areas are intricately interconnected and mutually reinforcing. However, this consensus has rarely translated into integrated programming on the ground. Drawing on a diverse set of case studies, this paper presents a renewed argument for robust integration of SSR and SALW programming. The failure to exploit innate synergies between the two areas in the field has not merely resulted in missed opportunities to leverage scarce resources and capacity, but has caused significant programmatic setbacks that have harmed wider prospects for peace and stability. With the SSR model itself in a period of conceptual transition, the time is ripe for innovation. A renewed emphasis on integrating SSR and SALW programming in FFCAS, while not a wholly new idea, represents a potential avenue for change that could deliver significant dividends in the field. The paper offers some preliminary ideas on how to achieve this renewed integration in practice.Book Details
Security sector reform (SSR) and mine action share a strong common conceptual basis, which draws from a shared understanding of security. They both reflect a conceptualization of security that is not limited to the level of the state, but takes into account security threats and needs at societal and individual levels. This common basis provides opportunities for synergies between SSR and mine action. However, empirical evidence demonstrates that the strong conceptual basis is not fully reflected in concrete activities, and the linkages remain limited and underexplored. Despite this gap, there are positive examples showing the potential for synergies between SSR and mine action. Ultimately, this paper maintains that the concept of human security provides a comprehensive framework which can bridge the differences and open broader opportunities for cooperation, which in turn will increase the impact of interventions in SSR and mine action.Book Details
While disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) and security sector reform (SSR) have become integral statebuilding tools in post-conflict states, the existing empirical literature examining their relationship has focused on supply-side considerations related to the programming of both processes. In practice, though, DDR and SSR are implemented in the wider context of war-to-peace transitions where the state is attempting to establish a monopoly over the use of force and legitimize itself in the eyes of domestic and international communities. This paper therefore assumes that to identify opportunities and constraints for establishing closer practical linkages between DDR and SSR it is important to take the local politics into consideration. It examines two past externally driven peacebuilding interventions in West Africa, namely Liberia and Sierra Leone, featuring cases in which the central state had essentially fragmented or collapsed. Through this comparative analysis, the paper aims to provide a stepping-stone for future studies examining demand-side considerations of DDR and SSR in post-conflict contexts.Book Details
Challenges to security and human rights involving extractive and other industries are addressed in a framework known as business and human rights (BHR), which shares many challenges and goals with SSR. This paper describes the grounds where BHR and SSR coincide in principles, actors and activities and which synergies can be built on that base. Opportunities for bridging BHR and SSR are drawn from a systematic comparison of case studies on Guinea, Colombia and Papua New Guinea. BHR and SSR should ideally cohere instead of collide.Book Details
The use of private security companies (PSCs) to perform services that are traditionally associated with the state presents a challenge to regulatory and oversight frameworks. Analyzing developments leading to the International Code of Conduct for Security Providers (ICOC) and the ICOC Association, this paper argues that a multistakeholder approach to develop standards adapted for the private sector and which creates governance and oversight mechanisms fills some of the governance gaps found in traditional regulatory approaches.Book Details