Research: Publications

The Challenges of Supporting Effective Security and Justice Development Programming

February 4, 2013 | Report

By Nicole Ball, Luc van de Goor

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Decision-makers face political, policy, organizational and delivery challenges in the areas of security and justice that are similar to those in other fields of development. Yet, security and justice stand out because their instruments (such as the military or legal systems) can be used to impose and enforce decisions that have an immediate impact on power relations, power distribution and, potentially, the stability of a country.

This report identifies a number of likely consequences of these characteristics. They pertain to the pace of activities, the need for a higher level of tolerance for delays and incremental results, the need for a solid, in-depth understanding of the political environment, the possibility of a more limited scope for external engagement than in other sectors, and the challenges of developing effective whole-of-government approaches given the high political profile of the work and the greater involvement of diplomatic, defense and intelligence actors in this area.

However, it is likely that a number of the observations in this report on how international support to security and justice development in fragile and conflict-affected states can be made more effective are relevant beyond this particular sector. Security and justice are particularly challenging areas to engage in and what passes their test of workability may hold relevance for other sectors too.

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