Navigating complexity. A review of training for peace in Africa
Training for Peace in Africa (TfP) has, since its start in 1995, been provided with NOK 170 million to strengthen African capacities for participation in peace support operations. This includes NOK 70 million for the current third phase (2008-2010). The focus of TfP has been on the police and civilian components of multidimensional peace operations through training, research and policy advice. From the start NUPI was managing and coordinating the programme on behalf of the MFA. This ended in 2006 with the MFA assuming direct responsibility, first managed from HQ and from 2008 through the Embassy in Pretoria.
Over the past five years the programme has expanded both geographically and in scope. In addition to the original implementing partners – Institute for Security Studies (ISS), African Centre for Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) and the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI) – TfP now also provides support to the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) in West Africa, and to the planning element of the Eastern African Standby Brigade (EASBRIG). The Norwegian Police Directorate has also been brought into the programme to help facilitate a major expansion of pre-deployment training of police officers.
- The review team’s overall conclusion is that TfP has been an important programme with highly relevant activities and outputs. It has achieved important outcomes and it has made a significant contribution to the evolving African Peace and Security Architecture, especially the conceptualisation of complex peace support missions and the role of the police and civilians in such missions. At the same time the review finds that outcomes have been uneven and that the programme has struggled with implementing suggested measures to enhance effectiveness and efficiency. This is partly the result of insufficient attention to programme management and planning for results.
- Training has been the dominant activity within TfP. The overall impression of the team is that the programme has succeeded in providing significant numbers of highly relevant training activities and outputs. TfP has also achieved significant outcomes, but these are more uneven. A main current success is training of police officers for deployment in Darfur and in Somalia. The review emphasises that future training needs to become more directly informed based upon an assessment of needs and on specification of targets to be met. It will also require more emphasis on working with training provided by other donors and to align with programmes of the training institutions and the needs of the African Standby Force (ASF).
- Research has been a core component of TfP since the start and a range of important publications have emerged. The team is less impressed by the current research activities. There is little systematic applied research and outputs are uneven and less satisfactory. Important efforts have, however, been made in 2008 and 2009 to improve research planning and to facilitate joint research.
- TfP has recorded important achievements in providing technical assistance and support to the evolving African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) and the African Standby Force (ASF) in particular. In the current phase this includes significant support to the AU Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD) and their preparations and planning for the role of the civilian component.
- Furthermore, the team highlights the importance of TfP for evolving Norwegian policies and approaches to peacekeeping and peacebuilding in Africa. The TfP programme has provided the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with an important and valuable platform for dialogue and co-operation with the AU, the UN and with other countries.
- The team notes that TfP has evolved in a flexible way with much trust given to TfP partners and implementing agencies in defining their response to changing demands and priorities. This may have been important in the pioneering stage of the TfP, but in the current context more emphasis must be placed on using the available resources to achieve clearly defined TfP objectives and priorities. This is challenging and demanding considering the diversity of TfP partners, the rapid expansion of the programme in recent years and the changing context and demands.
- There remains insufficient attention to monitoring and reporting results beyond the listing of outputs. This gap is a weak link in programme management, and further reduces the ability of programme champions to effectively communicate programme impact. TfP is institutionally under-developed in providing systems for monitoring, learning and developing from its own interventions. TfP does not have an overall strategic plan from which the programme can monitor and determine its overall impact. This has weakened the effectiveness and efficiency of the programme. The Ministry and the TfP partners have a shared responsibility for the weaknesses and shortcomings in programme management.
- Through TfP a strong platform has been established for further Norwegian support to peace support missions and dialogue with stakeholders. The team recommends a continuation of the programme, but also proposes a series of changes and adjustments to ensure that the programme can continue to make a relevant contribution.
Book Review of Pallister-Wilkins, Polly 2022. Humanitarian Borders. Unequal Mobility and Saving Lives.
Nordic Journal of Migration Research
WAR IN SUDAN 15 APRIL 2023: BACKGROUND, ANALYSIS AND SCENARIOS