ESDC Core Course on Security Sector Reform

The reform of the national security sector has become one of the major topics of international concern regarding crisis management and post-crisis recovery during the last decade.
The focus on traditional security actors such as the police, the military, the judiciary, prison personnel, border guards, and intelligence has been complemented by a more comprehensive view on human security, bringing the basic needs and physical, social and economic security and safety of individuals and the population to the centre of attention.

Scheduled Course

ESDC Core Course on SSR: 2 – 10 Oktober 2019
Application Deadline: 30 Juni 2019
Download: course brochure

The core security actors, together with all security management and oversight bodies, the justice and law enforcement institutions as well as non-statutory security forces need to act on the principles of human rights, local ownership, accountability and sustainability in co-operation and co-ordination with other national and international state and non-state actors for creating/developing a stable environment.

In order to meet these requirements, international organizations such as the UN and the EU have started to develop appropriate capabilities. The EU has created a pool of SSR experts to be used in the context of SSR activities carried out by the EU, within the framework of CSDP missions or Community external action. The UN has followed the same approach and is building up a roster of SSR experts who could be deployed in the context of UN missions on an ad-hoc basis.

Course Description

With this course, SSR activities of various actors, in particular the EU and UN will be supported. Experts should be prepared to deal with civilian, legal, police-related, or military challenges in the framework of a holistic SSR approach. The course deals with major aspects of the assessment, analysis, design, development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of SSR. Participants not only learn to collaborate with other actors from the various segments of the security sector but also learn lessons regarding the better functioning in their own field of expertise.


The methodology of the course aims at communicating the content taught in the modules in such a way that participants can later adapt and apply it in their daily work or in a new setting. Therefore, the methodology of the training is based on adult learning principles which allow the transfer of knowledge not only cognitively but also experientially.

Course participants coming from different fields will be encouraged to contribute with their specific experience to the content of the course, to the discussions and working groups. They should also actively share their experiences and their respective professional and practical insights with other course participants throughout the course.

Reading materials will be sent to the participants prior to the course in order to support the creation of common basic knowledge among participants. Moreover participants are asked to complete several IDL (internet-based distance learning) modules offered by the ESDC. The successful completion of the online modules during the preparation phase is a prerequisite to obtaining a course certificate after the residential part.

Target Group

Civilian, police and military experts from governments, civil society, the private sector, international institutions and agencies as well as international non-governmental organizations who are engaged in security (sub-) sector reform, post-conflict reconstruction and development cooperation are invited to participate in this course.

The course is offered under the umbrella of the Academic Programme of the European Security and Defence College (ESDC).

Course duration is 8 days. Approximately 30 participants will be selected.

Course Information SSR II 2019Course Brochure SSR II 2019Application Form SSR II 2019Invitation Letter SSR II 2019

ESDC Course on Recovery and Stabilisation Strategies

This Senior Level Course addresses the challenges at the policy/strategic level to include comprehensive, long-term considerations into short term international interventions to ensure that recovery and stabilisation efforts are successful and the transition from emergency to development can be managed. It highlights a number of selected challenges which require particular attention and includes case studies from ongoing recovery processes for analysis and critical review or inspiration.

ESDC Comprehensive Protection of Civilians Course (UN certified)

Reports of ongoing conflict and post-conflict contexts sadly still record the civilian populations as the major causualty. This course builds capacity for senior decision-makers of armed forces, police as well as civilian experts working at the operational level with or in the context of international peace missions and enables them to address challenges in protecting civilian populations in conflict or post-conflict contexts.
It is conducted under the Training Programme of the European Security and Defence College (ESDC) and has furthermore been certified by the UN Department for Peacekeeping Operations (UN DPKO).

Scheduled Course

ESDC Comprehensive Protection of Civilians Course (UN certified): 10 – 15 November 2019
Application Deadline: 1 September 2019
Download: Course Invitation
Download: Course Information
Download: Course Brochure
Download: Application Form

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