Printer-friendly versionSend by emailPDF version

Security Sector Reform

Gender Mainstreaming of the Security Sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina: From the Policy Papers to Reality

Citation:

Tomić, Ankica. 2015. “Gender Mainstreaming of the Security Sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina: From the Policy Papers to Reality.” Connections 14 (3): 87-102.

Author: Ankica Tomić

Annotation:

Summary:
"Gender mainstreaming of the security sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) twenty years ago was perceived as a “foreign” syntagma and proved very difficult to translate into the three official languages (Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian). The challenge was not only translation but also the transposition of that concept into reality. The link between the concept of gender mainstreaming and security sector tasks and responsibilities was a new topic for BiH society as well as globally. As a post-conflict country, in the last twenty years Bosnia and Herzegovina has gone through reforms in different areas such as police, intelligence, justice, etc. Those reforms were intensified in the period from 2003 until 2008 in the framework of the BiH integration process into the European Union and NATO. At that time, neither the BiH political elite nor representatives of the international community were aware of the benefits of the integration of the gender concept in those nor in other reforms in the country. It was women’s organizations that started familiarizing the BiH public with the importance of including and applying the concept of gender in security sector reforms, namely to implement United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (UNSCR 1325). They first gained financial support from the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and other UN organizations in order to implement different programs and projects. Those efforts, commitments, and the influence of these women’s organizations led to the government at all levels in Bosnia and Herzegovina establishing in 2003 official gender mechanisms such as the Gender Center of Government of Federation, the Gender Center of Government of Republic Srpska and, in 2004, the Gender Equality Agency at the national level. Their establishment came at a crucial moment for the institutionalization of gender mainstreaming in all areas of public and private life in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Only a few years after those gender mechanisms were established they were applied in the drafting of two strategic documents, the Gender Action Plan (GAP) for the period 2006-2013 and an Action Plan for the implementation of UNSCR 1325 in Bosnia and Herzegovina (AP 1325) for a period of three years (2010- 2013). Those two documents were not imposed or drafted externally, which was the case with many other documents in Bosnia and Herzegovina from that period. They were produced by the representatives of BiH institutions together with the representatives of NGOs according to local priorities and needs, an important precondition for local ownership and sustainability of the whole process. Because of this, many were hopeful that enacting these documents would have a real and positive effect on the lives of men, women, and children throughout the country. In this article I first give a brief overview of the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina before those national policy documents were adopted and of the post-adoption period. Second, my intention is to analyze the reasons why the adoption of AP 1325 was perceived as a big success in the country as well as the region and at a global level. Third, because I was personally involved in the implementation of the first AP 1325 on behalf of the Ministry of Security and in the drafting of the second AP 1325, my focus will be on the achievements of the Ministry of Security in the implementation process of AP 1325 as well as my personal experience with gender mainstreaming of the security sector in BiH. Finally, in my conclusion I examine the main lessons learned, current challenges, and present my personal view of how the envisaged goals from the documents can bring meaningful and real change to the daily lives of all people in Bosnia and Herzegovina" (Tomić 2015, 87 -89).

Topics: Civil Society, Gender, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, NGOs, Post-Conflict, Security Sector Reform, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325 Regions: Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina

Year: 2015

Risks Versus Transformational Opportunities in Gender-Responsive Security Sector Reform

Citation:

Gordon, Eleanor, Ciara McHugh, and Jane Townsley. 2020. "Risks Versus Transformational Opportunities in Gender-Responsive Security Sector Reform." Journal of Global Security Studies. doi:10.1093/jogss/ogaa028.

Authors: Eleanor Gordon, Ciara McHugh, Jane Townsley

Abstract:

This article investigates the gap between policy and practice in gender-responsive security sector reform (SSR) by exploring the ways in which risks perceived to be associated with gender-responsive SSR in conflict-affected environments legitimize inaction. A typology of risks is presented, which range from risks to individuals, security sector institutions, and peacebuilding efforts and encompass security, programmatic, fiduciary, and reputational risks. The risks are analyzed to consider the extent to which they are present and could be managed, mitigated, or avoided, rather than stall action. This article argues that the process of determining what constitutes a risk, and what constitutes a risk worth taking, is inherently political and serves to reinforce dominant power relations, including gendered power relations. The article then discusses the risks that result from inaction and the opportunities that are missed when arguments about risk trump gender responsiveness. As a result, it is argued that gender inequalities persist, women continue to be marginalized within and beyond the security sector, and transformational opportunities that could lead to sustainable peace are missed. The article concludes by arguing that the potential risks resulting from not advancing gender-responsive SSR far outweigh the perceived risks associated with it.

Keywords: security sector reform, gender, risks, transformational opportunities, peacebuilding

Topics: Conflict, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Peacebuilding, Security Sector Reform

Year: 2020

Restoring Confidence in Post-Conflict Security Sectors: Survey Evidence from Liberia on Female Ratio Balancing Reforms

Citation:

Karim, Sabrina. 2019. “Restoring Confidence in Post-Conflict Security Sectors: Survey Evidence from Liberia on Female Ratio Balancing Reforms.” British Journal of Political Science 49 (3): 799-821.

Author: Sabrina Karim

Abstract:

Civilian confidence in domestic institutions, particularly in the security sector, is important for stability and state consolidation in post-conflict countries, where third-party peacekeepers have helped maintain peace and security after a conflict. While other scholars have suggested that a strong security sector is necessary for mitigating the credible commitment problem, this article provides two alternative criteria for assessing security sector reforms’ effect on confidence in the security sector: restraint and inclusiveness. Female ratio balancing in the security sector meets these two criteria, suggesting that it has the potential to help enhance confidence in the security sector and thereby create the right conditions for the peacekeeping transition. The argument is tested using original surveys conducted in post-conflict, ex-combatant communities in Liberia. The expectations received empirical support. The findings indicate that restraining and inclusive reforms could improve trust in the state’s security sector. They also demonstrate the importance of considering gender in theories related to post-conflict peace building and international relations more broadly.

Keywords: security sector reform, peacekeeping, gender, ex-combatants, state building, Liberia

Topics: Combatants, Gender, Women, Peace and Security, Post-Conflict, Peacebuilding, Peacekeeping, Security Sector Reform Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Liberia

Year: 2019

The Masculine Logic of DDR and SSR in the Rwanda Defence Force

Citation:

Duriesmith, David, and Georgina Holmes. 2019. “The Masculine Logic of DDR and SSR in the Rwanda Defence Force.” Security Dialogue 50 (4): 361–79.

Authors: David Duriesmith, Georgina Holmes

Abstract:

Since the 1994 genocide and civil war, the Rwandan government has implemented an externally funded disarmament, demobilization and reintegration/security sector reform (DDR/SSR) programme culminating in the consolidation of armed groups into a new, professionalized Rwanda Defence Force. Feminists argue that DDR/SSR initiatives that exclude combatant women and girls or ignore gendered security needs fail to transform the political conditions that led to conflict. Less attention has been paid to how gendered relations of power play out through gender-sensitive DDR and SSR initiatives that seek to integrate women and transform hyper-masculine militarized masculinities. This article investigates how Rwanda’s DDR/SSR programme is governed by an oppressive masculine logic. Drawing on critical studies on men and masculinities and feminist work on peacebuilding, myths and the politics of belonging, it argues that Rwanda’s locally owned DDR/SSR programme places the military and militarization at the centre of the country’s nation-building programme. Through various ‘boundary-construction’ practices, the Rwandan government attempts to stabilize the post-1994 gender order and entrench the hegemony of a new militarized masculinity in Rwandan society. The case study draws on field research conducted in 2014 and 2015 and a discourse analysis of historical accounts, policy documents and training materials of the Rwanda Defence Force.

Keywords: DDR, gender, militarization, peacebuilding, Rwanda, SSR

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Combatants, Female Combatants, DDR, Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Genocide, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Peacebuilding, Post-Conflict, Security Sector Reform Regions: Africa, Central Africa, East Africa Countries: Rwanda

Year: 2019

The Commonwealth, Gender, and Peacekeeping

Citation:

Holmes, Georgina. 2017. "The Commonwealth, Gender and Peacekeeping." The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs 106 (4): 403-19.

Author: Georgina Holmes

Abstract:

Reflecting on the strategic commitment outlined in the Plan of Action for Gender Equality (2005–2015) and the priority issues of the Commonwealth Women’s Forum, this article assesses the extent to which the Commonwealth as an institution is supporting troop- and police-contributing member states in addressing the gender imbalance in peacekeeping operations. Drawing on desk-based research, interviews with international policymakers and a statistical analysis of the International Peace Institute Peacekeeping Database, the article first outlines the Commonwealth’s gender and security policy perspective before examining datasets to determine the success of Commonwealth member states in integrating women into uniformed peacekeeping contingents between 2009 and 2015. The article observes that, in spite of a renewed optimism and drive to propel women into leadership positions in politics, the judiciary, public bodies and private companies, security-sector reform and the implementation of pillar one of the UN Security Council Resolution 1325 are notably absent from the Commonwealth’s gender agenda. It is argued that this policy gap suggests that national and international security architecture is regarded as an accepted domain of male privilege. A lack of political will among Commonwealth heads of government to mainstream gender equality and facilitate structural transformation of national security organs and a chronically under resourced Commonwealth Secretariat limit the influence of the institution to that of arms-length promoter of international norms on women, peace and security.

Keywords: Commonwealth, gender, peacekeeping, UN Security Council Resolution 1325, gender mainstreaming, security organs

Topics: Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Peace and Security, Peacekeeping, Security Sector Reform, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325

Year: 2017

Brave warriors, Unfinished Revolutions: Political Subjectivities of Women Combatants in East Timor

Citation:

Siapno, Jacqueline. 2020. "Brave Warriors, Unfinished Revolutions: Political Subjectivities of Women Combatants in East Timor." In Women Warriors in Southeast Asia, edited by Vina Lanzona and Frederik Rettig, 246-63. New York: Routledge. 

Author: Jacqueline Siapno

Annotation:

Summary:
This chapter is an ethnography of institutions (military and police) and an examination of the DDR (Demobilisation, Disarmament, and Reintegration) and SSR (Security Sector Reform) processes in post-war Timor-Leste, focusing in particular on the situation of women in the National Police Force and the National Defense Force. The methodology includes fieldwork and oral interviews and public discussion presenting research findings to the hierarchy of justice, security, and defense institutions in East Timor and linking it to public policy on engendering security sector reform and corruption in the public service. The chapter includes interviews articulating the voices of women who fought in the anti-colonial resistance, their subsequent disillusionment, strategies for survival, their reflections on the unfinished if not betrayed revolution, but at the same time, the continuing pursuit of the ideals of justice, equality, independence, and healing from the war and from the life-space of militarised masculinities.

Topics: Combatants, Female Combatants, DDR, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Peace and Security, Post-Conflict, Security Sector Reform Regions: Oceania Countries: Timor-Leste

Year: 2020

Security Sector Reform, Small Arms and Light Weapons and Gender in the Post-Conflict Western Balkans

Citation:

Szedlacsek, Eszter. 2019. “Security Sector Reform, Small Arms and Light Weapons and Gender in the Post-Conflict Western Balkans.” Corvinus Journal of International Affairs 4 (1): 26-38.

Author: Eszter Szedlacsek

Abstract:

We all experience war in a different way – building peace in post-conflict environments requires solutions that bring together various aspects of these experiences at the local, national and international levels. However, the actors involved and the social groups they address are only rarely those at the margin, and the diversity of the catch-all category of “locals” frequently goes unacknowledged when considering Security Sector Reform (SSR) and especially small arms control. Numerous studies have focused on SSR and gender in the Balkans, on perceptions of security in post-conflict environments and its gender-related aspects, as well as on the gendered aspects of small arms, but so far the analysis bringing together all of these aspects is scarce. This paper aims to address this gap, providing an overview of these areas to show that attempts at state-building and security-provision in the Western Balkans have failed to appropriately incorporate gender mainstreaming into their agendas. It is the central claim of this paper that policymakers must realize that gender mainstreaming without a broader understanding of gendered aspects of security does not and will not have transformative power – neither in the Western Balkans, nor in other post-conflict environments.

Keywords: security sector reform (SSR), post-conflict, small arms and light weapons (SALW), gender, Western Balkans

Topics: Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Security Sector Reform, Weapons /Arms Regions: Europe, Baltic states, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Albania, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Serbia, Yugoslavia (former)

Year: 2019

Women in Post-Conflict Resolution and Reconstruction in Africa

Citation:

Scanlon, Helen, 2019. "Women in Post-Conflict Resolution and Reconstruction in Africa." In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of African History, edited by Thomas Spear. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Author: Helen Scanlon

Keywords: post-conflict resolution, post-conflict reconstruction, transitional justice, peace-building, gender-based human-rights violations, truth seeking, security sector reform, sexual violence in conflict (SVAC)

Annotation:

Summary: 
Women’s experiences of conflict have been the subject of increased international attention since the end of the Cold War and this has been accompanied by a concomitant growth in attention to the role of women in peace and security initiatives in Africa. Alongside the rise of humanitarian interventions, new trends have emerged in the realms of conflict resolution, accountability, and post-conflict transformation. As a result, post-conflict experiences in Africa in the 21st century have revealed numerous opportunities for the advancement of gender justice. Experiences from countries emerging from conflict on the continent provide some important examples of promoting women’s rights through accountability mechanisms, furthering access to government, producing gender-sensitive reform, challenging discriminatory laws, and advancing economic opportunities. However, while women’s needs and rights have been increasingly recognized through international and national commitments, women continue to face widespread gender-based violence as well as socioeconomic challenges in the aftermath of conflict. Thus, understanding intersectional experiences of conflict and the role of enduring gender power relations are critical to revisiting how transitions might be transformative. (Summary from Oxford Research Encyclopedias)

Topics: Economies, Conflict, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Justice, Transitional Justice, Peace and Security, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Peacebuilding, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Security Sector Reform Regions: Africa

Year: 2019

Leading the Operationalisation of WPS

Citation:

Hutchinson, Susan. 2018. "Leading the Operationalisation of WPS." Security Challenges 14 (2): 124-43.

Author: Susan Hutchinson

Annotation:

Summary:
"This paper considers how an intervening security force can implement the relevant components of the suite of United Nations Security Council resolutions on Women, Peace and Security (WPS). The analytical framework of the paper is a generic operational cycle comprised of preplanning, planning, conduct, and transition. Specific tasks identified in the resolutions are organised in this generic operational cycle. The tasks are those commonly led by security forces, or directed by government, and include: conflict analysis or intelligence; deliberate planning; force structure; population protection; female engagement; support to the rule of law; security sector reform; and disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration. This paper focuses on the experiences of the Australian Defence Force, with additional examples from militaries of Canada, Ireland, Sweden and the United States as well as organisational experiences from NATO and the United Nations. The paper draws on operations including, but not limited to, in Afghanistan, Rwanda, Yugoslavia and East Timor. Overall, the paper makes a unique contribution to the military operationalisation of the WPS agenda" (Hutchinson 2018, 124).

Topics: Armed Conflict, DDR, Gender, Women, Governance, International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Security, Security Sector Reform, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS Regions: Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, Americas, North America, Asia, South Asia, Europe, Balkans, Nordic states, Northern Europe, Western Europe, Oceania Countries: Afghanistan, Australia, Canada, Ireland, Rwanda, Sweden, Timor-Leste, United States of America, Yugoslavia (former)

Year: 2018

Deepening the Conversation: Feminism, International Policing and the WPS Agenda

Citation:

Huber, Laura K., and Natalie F. Hudson. 2019. “Deepening the Conversation: Feminism, International Policing and the WPS Agenda.” International Peacekeeping 26 (5): 579–604.

Authors: Laura K. Huber, Natalie F. Hudson

Abstract:

Scholarship on international police reform and Women, Peace and Security (WPS) has flourished in the last decade and the potential for engagement across these two bodies of literature is promising. Given the increased use of police personnel in international peace missions and emphasis on gender mainstreaming policies, the need for assessing the impact of these two trends has never been greater. Thus, this paper seeks to bridge gaps between the mainstream policing scholarship and feminist scholars focused on post-conflict peacebuilding police reforms. We explore how feminist scholars can engage with policing literature’s technocratic language and ‘in the field’ experience as well as how policing scholars can interact with feminist scholars to transform traditional approaches to security in the context of the WPS Agenda. We demonstrate the benefits of increased dialogue and interaction by highlighting the common and diverging challenges in both fields in three areas: the design, implementation, and evaluation. Finally, to illustrate the dynamic intersection of these areas of study and practice, we examine the transnational policing efforts to gender mainstream the Liberian National Police (LNP) in the context of the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL).

Keywords: feminism, police, gender, security sector reform (SSR), peacekeeping

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, International Organizations, Peacebuilding, Peacekeeping, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Security, Security Sector Reform, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Liberia

Year: 2019

Pages

© 2020 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.

Subscribe to RSS - Security Sector Reform