Center for Global Affairs

Security Sector Governance and the Rule of Law

Security, in its many and varied aspects, is a basic good, but one that can apparently only be properly conveyed through a strict adherence to legal norms as well as the consent of the subjects and objects of it. We need law and cooperation for security. How can the international community aid states in their transition from the ¿rule of the gun¿ to the ¿rule of law¿? How can the international community aid fragile and failing states in the provision of security while fostering long-term development of the rule of law and security sector reform? What challenges do developed democracies face in implementing the rule of law and what lessons about security sector reform can we learn from these cases that may apply to fragile or failing states? This class will examine why certain policies have failed to promote durable peace or create accountable security forces, including the military and police, and others have been more successful. It will investigate the role of the armed forces and police in different societies, the capacities of international and domestic actors to change those roles and ways in which societies can respond to security threats. It will look at how the security sector can be controlled in a democratic society and how transitional countries can manage this process. In addition to theoretical readings, the course will draw on examples and experiences from around the world including case studies of Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Liberia, Northern Ireland, the United States, Afghanistan, and Iraq.
Course Number
Associated Degrees