[TimorLesteStudies] MA Thesis: The United Nations and Security Sector Reform: Lessons from the Field

Bu Wilson Bu.Wilson at anu.edu.au
Tue Oct 20 13:53:06 EST 2009

The United Nations and Security Sector
Reform: Lessons from the Field
Michael Gillespie
Master of Arts Post War Recovery Studies
University of York
Post War Reconstruction and Development Unit
September 2009


Security Sector Reform has the potential to enable the emergence of a
sustainable peace and move a post conflict state into long term development,
the UN has a unique position in post conflict environments but has yet to
formulate a comprehensive approach to SSR. This paper seeks to analyse the
security sector reform activities that the current UN peacekeeping mission
in Timor-Leste is engaging in with a view to making recommendations for the
future development of a comprehensive UN approach to SSR. The paper explores
the debate around SSR as well as tracing the UN's previous engagements with
the security sector. This will provide the context to use Timor-Leste as a
case study in order to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the UN's role
in SSR there. It will be argued that the UN mission has been constrained by
a lack of prioritisation of SSR, a poor understanding of SSR theory within
the UN family and mission leadership as well as the legacy of the UN's past
mistakes. It is clear that these mistakes have the potential to be repeated
in future missions and so it is vital that the lessons from the mission be
learned and changes put into effect.

Available at:
http://fundasaunmahein.wordpress.com/ then click on link on far right of

Bu Wilson
Regulatory  Institutions Network (RegNet) Research School of Pacific and
Asian Studies College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National
Canberra   ACT   0200 

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E: Bu.Wilson at anu.edu.au


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