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Background

The Security Sector: Roles and responsibilities in security provision, management and oversight

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Abstract

This SSR Backgrounder is about the security sector. The “security sector” is a relatively new term that refers to the actors involved in the provision, management and oversight of security in a country. But this simple definition leaves room for different perspectives on which security actors are considered part of the security sector in each national context, and these differences shape approaches to SSG and SSR. This SSR Backgrounder explains different perspectives on the security sector in terms of the roles and responsibilities of security actors in good SSG.

This SSR Backgrounder answers the following questions:

  • Who is part of the security sector?
  • Why focus on the whole security sector instead of on national defence or law enforcement?
  • Who are the state security providers?
  • Who is responsible for security sector management and oversight?
  • Is the justice sector part of the security sector?
  • Are non-state security and justice providers part of the security sector?
  • Are commercial security providers part of the security sector?
  • Are armed non-state actors part of the security sector?
  • Are external actors part of the security sector?
  • Why is SSR based on broader definitions of the security sector?