Local Ownership in Security:

Case Studies of Peacebuilding Approaches


This report (download here) explores ways to achieve meaningful local ownership in the security sector. It provides nearly forty case studies of civil society and security actors using the principles of peacebuilding to work together towards human security.

Each case study highlights the efforts that civil society and security actors have undertaken in order to reach out to each other, create collaborative processes and participatory mechanisms to solve problems related to human security in particular local or national context. The report also tries to draw out lessons from these cases to help those who are seeking to engage with the civil society or security actors to improve human security to achieve better results.

Chapters 2-6 provide examples of civil society-military-police in five areas: capacity-building, policy-community platforms, peacebuilding approaches to DDR, gender mainstreaming, national-level platforms. Chapter 7 summarises some of the practical challenges of local ownership and coordination. It pulls out key themes, lessons learned and patterns across the case studies.

Chapter 2:
Capacity Building

for Human Security

Training has a number of functions related to local ownership in security. Training play a role in capacity building for both civil society and security forces to enable basic understanding, shared terminology, and skills necessary to work together. It also plays a role in building trust and relationships between civil society and security forces. Training often is a starting point, enabling dialogue, problem solving and more advanced levels of joint coordination for human security.

Most of the case studies in this section of the report document how civil society is providing training to security forces to help them improve their community engagement strategies.

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-The Philippines: Civil Society-Military-Police Capacity Building

- Israel and Palestine: Training Security Forces in Negotiation

- South Africa: Building Capacity for Human Security

- Brazil: Civil-Military-Police Joint Training

- Fiji: Training Military on Trauma Healing and Conflict Transformation

- US: Training Military in Trauma Awareness and Resilience

- Mali: Training Military in IHL and Human Rights

- Burundi Leadership Training Programme

- US: Training for US Military

- US and Global: Training on Civilian Harm Mititgation

- Global Training on "Do No Harm"

Chapter 3:
Police-Community Platforms for Local Ownership

A peacebuilding approach to policing emphasises the rapport between police forces and the communities they serve. It aims to engage local citizens as much as possible in policing policies and operations. The idea behind this approach, which puts local ownership at the centre, is that human security will improve significantly when police engage directly with civil society.

Each of the following cases illustrates some of these various elements of an approach to policing that is based on local ownership.

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- Afghanistan: Democratic Policing

Bangladesh: Community Security

Uganda: Participatory Community Security Assessment

Nepal: Business and Security

Kenya: Preventing Youth Violence

Lebanon: Building Trust between Communities and Local Police

Tanzania: Safety around Mining Sites

Pakistan: Bridging Traditional Justice with Policing

Chapter 4:
Local Ownership in DDR


DDR complements SSR/D by disarming, demobilising and reintegrating armed groups back into society. DDR contributes to human security by reducing the number of weapons and armed groups, reknitting social relationships and helping combatants transition to civilian livelihoods. Peacebuilding skills and processes can be used within DDR programs.

This chapter describes four case studies where peacebuilding skills and processes support more effective DDR.

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DRC: Peacebuilding-based DDR

Mozambique: Civil Society Roles in DDR

Afghanistan: Mediation-based DDR

Burundi: Civil Society Roles in DDR

Chapter 5:
Gender Mainstreaming in Security

Local ownership of security requires that all women, men, girls, boys, as well as lesbians, gay, bisexual, transsexual and intersex people (LGBTI) contribute to defining security threats and strategies. People affected by sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) may have different security needs depending on their gender identity.

The following case studies show how peacebuilding organisations approach SGBV and the inclusion of women in different contexts.

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Fiji: Women, Peace and Security in Defence Policy

Pakistan: Gender-Responsive Policing

Pakistan: Training Women to Participate in Security Policymaking

Chapter 6:
National Level Platforms for Local Ownership


Earlier chapters in this volume illustrate the creative and inspiring work to improve local ownership. This chapter explores national-level case studies of efforts to improve local ownership and human security. The case studies generally fit into three categories - national security challenges, national peace councils, and joint institutional oversight - with some efforts indicating more robust levels of local ownership than others.

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Burundi: Civil Society Consultation and Oversight in SSR/D 

Guatemala: Toward a Democratic Security Policy 

The Philippines: The "Bantay Bayanihan" Forum 

Ghana: A National Infrastructure for Peace 

Kenya: A National Peace Council 

West Africa: Early Warning and Early Response 

Senegal: The Armée-Nation as Indigenous Model for Peace 

Guinea: Civil-Military "Champions of Change" 

Yemen: National and Regional Dialogues on Justice and Security 

Libya: Multi-stakeholder National Dialogue Preparatory Commission 


Chapter 7:
Common Challenges
and Lessons Learned

Some common patterns and themes emerge from the case studies providing insights into how peacebuilding organisations address the challenges they encounter on the ground.

This chapter draws out the challenges and lessons learned identified in the case studies.

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