Peaceful, prosperous societies need people and institutions to be subject to law that is fairly applied. The U.S. Institute of Peace helps states and members of society work together to strengthen the rule of law, often through justice and security sector reforms. USIP develops innovative models to foster and shepherd sustainable and locally supported reforms, trains rule-of-law practitioners, conducts research and holds forums to share knowledge. The institute also supports programs such as Justice and Security Dialogues, which seek to build trust between civil society and officials from the justice and security sectors.

Featured Publications

Libya’s Religious Sector and Peacebuilding Efforts

Libya’s Religious Sector and Peacebuilding Efforts

Thursday, March 16, 2017

By: Palwasha L. Kakar; Zahra Langhi

Derived from two surveys conducted in Libya in 2014 and 2016, this report strives to heighten understanding of the country’s religious sector and its impact on governance and society. The findings—which are bolstered by the local knowledge of Libyan researchers—map the major religious trends, institutions, and actors in the country to describe how Libyans perceive the contribution of the religious sector to building peace and fostering justice and democracy.

Religion; Democracy & Governance; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

Why International Women’s Day Matters

Why International Women’s Day Matters

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

By: Kathleen Kuehnast, Ph.D.

When Mahatma Gandhi was leader of the Indian National Congress in 1921, he advocated for women’s rights as key to modernizing Indian society. He understood that you cannot change a society peacefully without turning to women, half of the population, to make it happen. In an open letter in 1930, he wrote, “If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with women.” It was a radical idea at the time to make women, who usually are invisible, visible. It’s still radical today.

Gender; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

Women, Peace, and Security in Pakistan

Women, Peace, and Security in Pakistan

Thursday, February 16, 2017

By: Zeenia Faraz

A society defined by patriarchal norms and structural inequalities keeps women and girls on the margins of the society and hinders women’s participation in public and political spheres. Yet women’s participation in decisions related to peace and security in the country is essential to peacebuilding and postconflict reconstruction. This brief examines the challenges in implementing the women, peace, and security framework in Pakistan.

Gender; Violent Extremism; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

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Current Projects

Advancing Women, Peace and Security

Advancing Women, Peace and Security

The U.S. Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security (U.S. CSWG) is a non-partisan network of civil society organizations with expertise on the impacts of women in war and their participation in peacebuilding. Established in 2010, the working group is an engaged coalition to promote the effective implementation of the U.S. National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security.

Gender; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

Police-Community Dialogues

Police-Community Dialogues

Given that many members of the South Sudan police force are former soldiers, serious gaps remain in the concept of public security and the role of law enforcement in creating secure communities in South Sudan. Tensions remain between members of civil society organizations and the police stemming from confrontational approaches that both sides have adopted during the transition to democracy.

Mediation, Negotiation & Dialogue; Justice, Security & Rule of Law; Education & Training

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