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What is the security sector?

What is the security sector?

The security sector consists of the core security and justice providers and their management and oversight institutions. The legal and policy framework regulates their tasks, authorities and structures. Core security and justice providers are:

  • Security forces (armed forces, police, intelligence and security services, but also liberation armies and militias groups);
  • Justice and law enforcement institutions (courts, prosecution services, prisons, traditional justice systems).

Management and oversight institutions are:

  • Executive management and oversight bodies (Presidency, Council of Ministers, ministries of defence, interior, justice and finance);
  • Legislative management and oversight bodies (Parliament and its committees);
  • Informal oversight institutions (civil society organisations, media, research and advocacy organisations).

What is meant by Security Sector Governance (SSG)?

SSG refers to the structures, processes values and attitudes that shape decisions about security and their implementation. SSG emphasises:

  • Transparency in security decision-making process;
  • Accountability of the security sector institutions;
  • Inclusiveness in the reform process.

What is meant by Security Sector Reform (SSR)?

SSR aims to enhance effective and efficient delivery of security under conditions of democratic oversight and control. SSR entails:

  • Conceptual frameworks and methodologies for optimising the use of available security resources;
  • Comprehensive approach to reform in which key actors play a role;
  • Inclusive participation of a broad variety of political and societal actors in security policies.