Gender in the Security Sector: a Cultural and a Political Challenge

Security sector reform means transforming the security sector/system, which includes all the actors, with their roles, responsibilities and actions, working together to manage and operate the system in a manner that is more consistent with democratic norms and sound principles of good governance and thus contributes to a well-functioning security framework. Security Sector Reform (SSR) working definitions must be comprehensive and must include: intelligence agencies, military intelligence, police forces, the army in its domestic role and praetorian guards (republican, royal or presidential).

Implementing any reform in any field on the ground can be confronted by severe resistance factors. This paper will focus particularly on cultural and political challenges as the main obstacles to gender diversification in the security sector in the Arab world.

The views represented in this paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Arab Reform Initiative, its staff, or its board.