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Title: Reshaping the forces of (dis)order : US-sponsored security sector reform in Colombia and Mexico
Author: Angelo, Paul J.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8507 7444
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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The inability of governments to deliver human security to their citizenries has often driven ambitious programmes of security sector reform (SSR). SSR programmes hold effectiveness and accountability of the security sector (military, police, and judicial agencies) as the central pillars of their design, and Colombia and Mexico represent two recent instances of SSR in Latin America. In both cases, national governments and their top international donor, the US government, invested considerable resources into military, police, and judicial agencies to reform and professionalise security sectors struggling to contain formidable threats to security. Notwithstanding similar challenges and programme designs, however, the Colombian effort, known as Plan Colombia, contributed to an increasingly professional security sector that demonstrated improved capabilities to deliver enhanced citizen security, whereas the Mexican government, via the Mérida Initiative, struggled to improve the effectiveness and accountability of its security sector. This study explores that disparity in outcomes. Employing the comparative method, the author identifies three independent variables that exhibit a positive relationship with improvements on the dependent variable of this study, security sector governance, in Colombia but negative values in Mexico. Specifically, the study points to private sector support, inter-party consensus, and the centralisation of security bureaucracy as key factors. In doing so, the author highlights both successes and failures in the design of reformed security regimes and considers how other governments might learn from these lessons.
Supervisor: Middlebrook, K. J. ; Saunders-Hastings, K. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available