Institute for Security Studies

The ISS was founded in 1991 as the Institute for Defence Policy by the current Executive Director, Dr Jakkie Cilliers, together with Mr PB Mertz. The Institute’s head office is in Pretoria, South Africa. Regional ISS offices are located in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Dakar (Senegal) and Nairobi (Kenya). http://www.issafrica.org

Library Articles

Key to the Horn Ethiopia’s Prospects to 2030

Ethiopia’s current path of development is explored in this brief, as well as the policies which are examined that could accelerate Ethiopia’s growth, support the country’s transition to lower-middle income status and advance human development up to 2030. It is a summary of a much more comprehensive independent report that was completed for the United States Agency for International Development,...

From Rhetoric to Action Delivering for Young Women in Africa

Young African women between the ages of 15 and 35 find themselves in a conundrum, in a world that is highly patriarchal and ageist - frequently facing a double burden brought about by their gender and age, and falling through the cracks of government programmes. While the need to empower young women is often couched in an argument of numbers, this policy brief argues that through enhanced action...

More than Propaganda A Review of Boko Haram’s Public Messages

Published: 2017
The public statements of Boko Haram from its resurgence in 2010 until its split into two main factions in August 2016 is reviewed in this report. While Boko Haram (more accurately referred to as Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati wal-Jihad prior to its March 2015 pledge to the so-called Islamic State, and Wilayat Gharb Afriqiyah, or West Africa Province, afterwards) is often considered a...

Reviving the AU’s Maritime Strategy

Published: 2017
The African Union (AU) is failing to implement several key maritime strategies which was drawn up, owing to lack of resources and expertise. The AU risks marginalizing maritime security work, therefore this inertia must change in 2017. This policy brief is based on the assumption that long-term, coordinated and sustainable development will lead to improvements in security, economic development...

Partnering for Sustainable Peace in Liberia

This paper first analyzes Liberia’s national frameworks relevant to peace building and then examines the engagements of multiple peace building actors in Liberia, with a particular focus on the roles of African regional, sub regional and bilateral organisations. It also unpacks principles as to why they may hold an advantage in certain peace building activities. Finally, the paper explores how...

Beyond Rhetoric Engaging Africa’s Youth in Democratic Governance

The overview presented in this brief, discusses the continental normative framework on youth engagement by the African Union (AU). It argues that there is a disconnect, both in theory and practice, between youth rights and freedoms on the African continent. The important roles of the AU, is highlighted in this brief, as well as the regional economic communities and member states in meaningfully...

Money Talks - A Key Reason Youths Join Boko Haram

The particular observation in this study, that people join Boko Haram because of financial rewards, challenges the popular scholarly proposition that poverty has no direct causal link with terrorism and violent extremism. Although, it is not the only cause, poverty or financial reward, does, however play an important role in people’s decision to join Boko Haram. The despicable poverty in...

Boko Haram and Violent Extremism - Perspectives from Peacebuilders

Since 2009, Boko Haram have unleashed atrocities which have affected millions of people in Nigeria and the region as a whole. The results of a field-based study on peace builders’ perspectives of the drivers of violent extremism; and the underlying socio-economic and political factors that influence individuals to join Boko Haram is presented in this policy brief. The study reveals that peace...

Conflict Prevention What’s in it for the AU?

Several conflict prevention initiatives was developed by the African Union (AU) since its inception in 2002. Now, with the increased expectation for more effective responses to conflicts, the AU must reflect on its different roles and improve its ability to implement policy frameworks with the goal of preventing conflicts and sustaining peace. The role of the AU in conflict prevention...

Preventing Violent Extremism: South Africa’s Place in the World

The prevention of violent extremism (PVE) has become a priority for the global community. This policy brief examines the global environment in terms of policy and implementation frameworks, and explores South Africa’s position in this prevention context. Recommendations are made as to how South Africa should take PVE forward, based on the risks in evidence at the moment.

Pages