Security and violence reduction are leading concerns in peace processes, as well as in contexts with high rates of armed violence. Considerable normative and operational innovations have occurred in the past decade to support government officials, peace process actors and civil society to make smarter decisions and implement effective practice. Violence reduction and weapons control is a leading area of expertise for Athena with Cate Buchanan and several of our specialists having a wide range of experience.
Types of work we do:
• Provide country and issue briefs on a range of security themes such as good practice in justice and security system reforms, strengthening gun laws, disarmament;
• Agreement text drafting and review;
• Evaluating programmes and policies;
• Programme and policy development, design and implementation;
• Mentoring as well as side-by-side support to officials and others to strengthen good practice;
• Policy-relevant research;
• Peer reviews of analytical material;
• Remedial work on reports and documents including editing and drafting.
Examples of current and past work include:
• In 2018/19 Cate Buchanan contributed to the forthcoming UN Guidance on Mediating Ceasefires providing analysis on gender inclusion, prevention and response to sexual and gender-based violence, and child protection.
• A particular are of our expertise is working to strengthen gun laws and linking such laws to other relevant standards and policies across governments. A project developed by one of the Managing Partners of Athena Consortium is an example of interest and capacity in this area. The Surviving Gun Violence Project (SGVP) was developed to build greater clarity about the realities for those who survive armed. Supported by the Government of Norway and spearheaded by Cate Buchanan, SGVP built on years of experience and expertise in violence reduction, gun control, women’s rights and responding to survivors of violence. Cate was the Chief Editor of the book Gun Violence, Disability and Recovery (2014) which includes chapters and shorter pieces on thematic issues (e.g. victims’ rights and standards, social protection, rehabilitation and recovery) and country studies (e.g. Guatemala, Somalia, India, South Africa, Canada). Over 100 people contributed either as writers, peer reviewers, sounding boards, photographers and more. This included survivors, carers, justice professionals, emergency surgeons, physiotherapists, counselors, social protection specialists and disability rights advocates.
See Athena's publications for analytical material on this theme.