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Policy Papers - October 15, 2005

In Good Company? The Role of Business in Security Sector Reform

Francesco Mancini

 

 

From the summary report: Security sector reform (SSR) has emerged in recent years as a way of tackling security and development issues in conflict-torn and conflict-prone states. It combines a wide range of activities aimed at reforming the security institutions of the state—the military, police, intelligence services and criminal justice system—in order to make them capable of delivering security to citizens. An increasing volume of SSR work has been outsourced to private contractors. A range of organizations, from private security companies, management consulting firms and risk management companies, to nongovernmental organizations and freelance consultants, are involved in the delivery of services that include professional and operational training, management support and diagnosis and policy review. The paper argues that:

•    Donor agencies have to develop more effective ways to engage, manage and control the work of private contractors in SSR;
•    The task of minimizing the risks and maximizing the benefits of outsourcing lies with the initiating donor agencies and recipient countries;
•    Additional research is needed to probe the comparative advantage of using the private sector for particular tasks and functions.

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