Security & Rule of Law in Fragile and Conflict-Affected Settings (SRoL)

Security and rule of law are necessary preconditions for a stable and sustainable development of countries and regions. The Security & Rule of Law research programme aims to enhance the knowledge-base of security and rule of law policies and intervention programmes in fragile and conflict-affected settings, in order to improve their effectiveness. The research programme uses a combined approach of knowledge development and application thereof by funding both strategic and applied research.

The programme consists of two funding instruments:

Within each instrument several calls for proposals have been published, aimed at a specific theme.

  • Aim and objectives

    Security & Rule of Law (SRoL) is one of the priority policy areas of Dutch development cooperation. The research programme aimed at contributing to security and rule of law in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs) by tackling the underlying causes of conflicts, instability and exclusion and, from the viewpoint of human security, supporting positive forces in society.

    1. Calls for proposals

      Strategic Research Fund

      The SRoL Strategic Research Fund seeks to promote strategic research geared at providing evidence-based policy advice and policy descriptions to development practitioners. The research is problem-oriented, demand-driven and combines the effort of research organisations across the globe, including at least one LMIC. Two calls for proposals have been launched under the fund:

      1. Employment for Stability (2014)

      2. Call for proposals on Comprehensive Approaches to Human Security (2015)

      Applied Research Fund

      The SRoL Applied Research Fund focuses on applied research, including action research, that addresses the question how the actual implementation of policies in the field of security and rule of law can be improved. Five calls for proposals have been launched under the fund:

      1. Embedding Justice in Power and Politics (2014 )
      2. Open call for evidence-based policy advice and tools (2015)
      3. Call for evidence-informed ideas (2015)
      4. Call for applied research on the influence of transnational challenges in Fragile and Conflict-Affected Settings (2015)
      5. Call for applied research on addressing mixed migration flows (2016)
    2. Budget and duration

      The programme ran from 2013 to 2020.

    3. Partners

      To strengthen the knowledge base of this policy, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs installed the Knowledge Platform Security & Rule of Law (KPSRL). This platform plays a central role in identifying and articulating knowledge demands, formulating research questions and promoting knowledge exchange.

      The Security & Rule of Law research programme was developed by the Knowledge Platform and WOTRO Science for Global Development to promote research that contributes to strengthening the knowledge base. 



    4. Committees

      Programme Committee

      The Security & Rule of Law research programme was governed by a Programme Committee (PC). The PC consisted of representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Steering Group of the Knowledge Platform Security & Rule of Law and of the international scientific community and is chaired by an independent, technical chair. The PC decided upon the various calls for proposals, in close collaboration with Knowledge Platform. It also decided on the allocation of funding, based on the advice of independent, international experts.

      The members of the PC were:

      • Prof. Catrien Bijleveld (Chair), director of the NSCR
      • Ms Wilma van Esch, head of the Rule of Law and Peacebuilding division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands
      • Prof. Willem van Genugten, Chair Steering Group Knowledge Platform Security & Rule of Law
      • Dr Alfred G. Nhema, Chief Executive Officer at the Pan African Development Center
      • Ms Michelle Ndiaye Ntab MA, Director of the Africa Peace and Security Programme at the Institute for Peace and Security Studies

      International Advisory Committee

      Proposals submitted to the various calls were assessed by an International Advisory Committee (IAC). IAC members also evaluated the midterm and final reports (including products resulted from the projects) of the awarded projects. Moreover, they advised the Programme Committee when running projects request substantial changes. The IAC was composed of independent, international researchers and practitioner experts from development practice and policy. Members of the IAC had been installed by the Programme Committee.

      The members of the IAC were:

      • Dr Susan Allen, Director of the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University
      • Dr Annie Chikwanha, Senior researcher at the South African Institute for International Affairs, Nairobi Office
      • Prof. Han Dorussen, Division Director International Relations at Essex University
      • Volker Hauck MA, Head of the Conflict, Security and Resilience Programme at ECDPM
      • Dr Lucy Hovil, Senior researcher at the International Refugee Rights Initiative
      • Prof. Inge Hutter (Chair), Rector of the International Institute of Social Studies
      • Prof. Paul Jackson, Professor at the University of Birmingham
      • Dr Walt Kilroy, Associate Director of the Institute for International Conflict Resolution and Reconstruction
      • Marina Ottaway, Middle East Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center
      • Dr Lisa Schirch, Director of Human Security at the Alliance for Peacebuilding
      • Dr Jacki Wilson, Principle of Civic Fusion International
      • Dr James Worrall, Associate Professor in International Relations and Middle East Studies at the University of Leeds

      Other IAC members were:

      • Dr Annette Idler, Director of Studies, Changing Character of War Programme, University of Oxford
      • Dr Patricia Justino, Research fellow at the Institute of Development Studies
      • Prof. David Lewis, Head of Department Social Policy of the London School of Economics and Political Science

      Pool of International Experts

      Within certain calls for proposals, submitted proposals were pre-assessed by a Pool of International Experts (PIE), before being assessed by the IAC. The PIE was then composed of (international) researchers and practitioner experts from the relevant sector, including development practice and policy. The PIE had been installed by the Programme Committee.

      Managing Tasks

      NWO-WOTRO Science for Global Development was responsible for the day-to-day management of the research programme, including organising the assessment procedures and all administration with regard to awarded projects. NWO-WOTRO also runned the secretariat of the PC, the IAC and the PIE.

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    SRoL countries