Constitutional Reform Processes and Security Sector Reform: Expert Meeting Held in The Hague

On 3 & 4 April 2014, Constitutional Transitions convened the first expert network meeting for our ongoing research project, “Constitutional Reform Processes and Security Sector Reform: Principles for Practice,” in The Hague, Netherlands. The meeting brought together a global network of experts to present case studies on ten countries that have undergone security sector reform in the context of a constitutional transition. The objective of the meeting was to compare the experiences of constitutional transition and security sector reform in different countries and contexts, and working together as a team of experts, to extract principles and lessons from the collective experience of these countries’ transitions.

Partnering with the Constitution Building Programme of International IDEA, the project aims to provide a set of guiding principles for security sector reform in the context of constitution building processes. The project’s focus spans thirteen countries: states that have undergone transitions to democracy (Argentina, Chile, Ghana, Indonesia, Iraq, Kenya, Spain, South Africa, and Turkey), and countries in the MENA region that are currently in transition (Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, and Yemen). Case study authors  include Julia Pomares and Sandra Elena (Argentina), Justice Gonzalo Garcia Pino (Chile), Kwesi Aning and Ernest Lartey (Ghana), Lieutenant General Agus Widjojo (ret) (Indonesia),  Zaid Al-Ali (Iraq), Lawrence Gitonga Mwongera (Kenya), Narcis Serra (Spain), Richard Stacey and Christina Murray, Ersel Aydinli (Turkey) and Phillipe Droz-Vincent (MENA region). The project leads are Zoltan Barany (University of Texas), Sumit Bisarya (International IDEA), Sujit Choudhry (Constitutional Transitions) and Richard Stacey (Constitutional Transitions).

The project will produce a policy manual directed at practitioners in the field and a policy audience, as well as an edited volume directed at an academic and research audience and working papers available freely online. Further information on the project can be found here.