The Politics of Security Sector Reform: Challenges and Opportunities for the European Union’s Global Role

‘From Afghanistan to the Balkans, from Palestine to Africa, reforming armed forces, police, legal and judicial systems, is now recognised as a vital component of post-conflict reconstruction, state-building and democratisation. This book is a valuable contribution to the emerging debate on security sector reform. The detailed case studies in this volume provide important insights into the challenges of security sector reform and the European Union’s role in this area.’   Andrew Cottey, University College Cork, Ireland

Security Sector Reform (SSR) is increasingly becoming a cornerstone in international security and development cooperation. Indeed, the concept has often been seen as a panacea for many of the biggest threats to the world such as failed states, terrorism and poverty.

The Politics of Security Sector Reform: Challenges and Opportunities for the European Union’s Global Role focuses on the complexities of implementation of SSR across the globe and the actual and potential role for the European Union (EU) to play in SSR. This involves not only opportunities, but challenges to be overcome as well.

There are three core themes to the book: Policy, Policies and Practice. By presenting the themes in this particular order a greater appreciation of the influences on the process of SSR, from conception to implementation is relayed to the reader.

About the editors: Magnus Ekengren is Associate Professor at the Swedish National Defence College. Greg Simons is a reseacher at the Swedish National Defence College.


Preface, Gunilla Carlsson, Minister for International Development Cooperation, Sweden; Introduction, Magnus Ekengren and Greg Simons

Part I Towards a Policy: Concept and Experiences: Three traditions and the concept of security sector reform, Carl-Einar Stålvant; Security and safety in the Baltic Sea region 1989–2004: transformations and three agents of change, Carl-Einar Stålvant; Searching for homeostasis in the security domain: the Polish experience, Witold M. Patoka.

Part II EU Policies: The quest for an EU approach for security sector reform, Alyson J.K. Bailes; The EU’s view on security sector reform, Malena Britz; Prospects and advantages of EU security sector reform, David Spence; The challenge of a broadening security agenda for EU security sector reform, Magnus Ekengren.

Part III Case Studies of SSR Politics in Practice: Security sector reform in the Western Balkans: the challenge of coherence and effectiveness, Gemma Collantes-Celador and Ana F. Juncos; Ukrainian security identity and NATO generated SSR, Fredrik Bynander; The politics of borders and nationalities in Ukraine: impacts upon security sector reform, Greg Simons; The control of small arms and light weapons in Ukraine: the need for strengthened international security sector reform, Andrea Johansson; Missed opportunities: the European Union and security sector reform in Afghanistan, Mark Sedra; Security sector reform in sub-Saharan Africa: a new playground, different rules, new players?, Magnus Jörgel; The European Union and SSR in Guinea-Bissau, Caroline Bahnson; Liberian vigilantes: informal security provision on the margins of security sector reform, Ana Kantor and Mariam Persson

Conclusion: challenges and opportunities – towards a comprehensive EU SSR policy and practice, Magnus Ekengren and Greg Simons; Epilogue: central insights and recommendations for EU SSR, Magnus Ekengren; Index.

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