Handbook of International Security and Development
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Handbook of International Security and Development

Edited by Paul Jackson

The Handbook of International Security and Development provides a survey of current thinking within the field of security and development. With a wide range of chapters that offer a guide to the core approaches, methods and issues, this book explores the links between the two and includes contributions from both practitioners and academics. With topics ranging from the politics of aid by remote control through to intervention and the re-establishment of security and demobilisation of combatants, this Handbook provides a comprehensive introduction to the literature and approaches used in the field of security and development.
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Chapter 11: Transitioning from first to second generation security sector reform in conflict-affected countries

Mark Sedra


A July 2005 statement by the presidency of the United Nations Security Council would call security sector reform (SSR) ‘an essential element of any stabilization process in post-conflict environments’ (UN Security Council 2005). Three years later, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon would further entrench SSR at the core of the international security and development policy architecture, referring to it as ‘more than just a goal’ for the UN and its member states but rather a ‘shared obligation, especially in countries recovering from conflict’ (Ki-moon 2008). Less than a decade after the concept was first articulated in a 1999 speech by then UK Secretary of State for International Development Clare Short, SSR had been established as a central pillar of peace-building and state building doctrine. It came to represent a point of convergence between the fields of development, security and governance – a manifestation of the security-development nexus that has characterized peace-building and state building policy over the last decade. By early 2014, however, in sharp contrast to the rapid ascent of the concept in international policy, it featured a very meagre record of achievement. In fact, in conflict-affected settings, the most celebrated target for SSR assistance, it would be difficult to identify a single unfettered SSR success story that could inspire and inform its implementation. This exemplifies the principal problem that has always faced SSR – its conceptual-contextual divide (Chanaa 2002).

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