How Do We Measure The Success of Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) Programmes?
Over the past 20 years, DDR programmes have been introduced in more than 30 countries and are frequently mandated by UN Security Council Resolution’s (Clark, 2014:1). Each programme is driven by a wide range of actors and donors with diverse assumptions, expectations and mandates (Herbert et al, 2013:16) and is often plagued by diverse challenges including ‘cultural insensitivity, excessive force, poor coordination, half-baked approaches and discriminatory and localized perspectives’ (Wepundi, 2011:59). While many evaluative studies have been carried out, existing literature on the subject suggests that the track record of DDR programmes is difficult to assess (Humphrey & Weinstein, 2005:3). As a result the extent to which DDR has been an effective tool to achieve peace, security and development in post conflict societies remains unclear and there is no uniform idea of how success or failure should be defined. Traditionally, the success of DDR is measured crudely by how many ex-combatants have participated and how many guns collected. This paper argues that since DDR programmes do not exist in isolation, but are often introduced as part of broader peace-building efforts in post conflict societies, success could better be measured, qualitatively as well, in military (security), political, and economic terms by assessing on a caseby-case basis, the extent to which each specific programme contributes to providing security, not only for the ‘state’ but for individuals and their communities as well, building legitimate political institutions, and reviving the economy thus creating an enabling environment for peace, security, stability and long term development