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CIDS Report on right for information access

The report is particularly useful for understanding the different aspects of the issue of access to information and transparency for the public eye on security sector matters since it identifies the standards existing, the various ways of practising the standards, the way authorities may use the harm and public interest tests for handling own practice, as well discussing the globally recognized Tshwane Principles. Montenegro is used as a case, but the main topic on information access and balanced transparency is relevant for most other cases, and especially so in a representative democracy context.

Download CIDS report No. 1/2017

CIDS report on corruption in Afghanistan

Direktør IFS, Sven Holtsmark med oppsummering

IFS Director Sven Holtsmark with a summary.

The CIDS report on NATO and the fight against corruption in Afghanistan called «Too little, too late» launched at joint IFS/CIDS seminar 15th March 2017.

The author, LtCol Tore Ketil Stårvik, gave a brief presentation of the major findings stressing the challenging context of Afghanistan and the military mission itself.

A panel debate lead by Per A Christensen, the director of CIDS, followed. In addition to the author, the panel consisted of former Norwegian Minister of trade, Foreign Affairs and Defence, Mr. Bjørn Tore Godal, Dr. Karolina MacLachlan from Transparency International Defence and Security Programme, and Marit Elisabeth Brandtzæg from the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD).

There was consensus among the panel that the findings in the report reflected the challenges in Afghanistan and for military engagement in fragile environments, and the findings were recognized as being highly relevant for other sectors as well. The report should be used as a lessons learned on what areas to focus on when engaging in stabilisation and peace support missions in the future, in order to mitigate the risks for conducting the same mistakes again.
Director of the Norwegian Institute of Defence Studies (IFS), Sven Holtsmark, concluded the seminar by emphasising that there seems to be an element of “mission impossible” over engaging militarily in a complex and fragile state hoping for institution building, mission success and quick wins at the same time. By conducting research and learn from previous missions, as the report is an excellent example of, we will hopefully be able to face future challenges better.

Download the report “Too little, too late” here (PDF)

Fra venstre: Per A Christensen, Tore Ketil Stårvik, Bjørn Tore Godal, Karolina Machlachlan og Marit Elisabeth Brandtzæg

From left: Per A Christensen, Tore Ketil Stårvik, Bjørn Tore Godal, Karolina Machlachlan and Marit Elisabeth Brandtzæg.

Forfatteren Tore Ketil Stårvik oppsummerer rapporten.

Author Tore Ketil Stårvik summarises the report.

Seminar on defence and sensitive security procurement in Ukraine


CIDS in Ukraine; Seminar on defence and sensitive security procurement organised in Kyiv 25th April 2017.

At the request of the Defence Ministry of Ukraine and the MoD Reforms Project Office CIDS organised a seminar on the Defence and security Directive 2009/81/EC about defence and sensitive security procurement. The introduction of the main Directive principles was presented by Ms Anela Duman, CIDS public procurement expert. A lively discussion was prompted by the presentation on the experience, lessons learned and good practices of Croatia delivered by Mr Hrvoje Salopek, former Deputy Head of Procurement Implementation Department, Sector for Public procurement, Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Croatia. CIDS is very grateful for the Croatian support to the seminar.

According to Ukraine’s Government Strategy of Public Procurement Reform, the Defence Ministry will implement the Directive provisions starting from January 2019. Ukrainian full ownership is paramount for succeeding in the implementation.

Roundtable on Internal Control of Police held in Budva, Montenegro

montenegro-december-2016_1On December 1, 2016 CIDS organised a round-table titled Internal Control of Police – Independency, Strategies and Methods. The event was held in Budva as part of project’s support to the Montenegrin Ministry of Interior.

The roundtable brought together top and mid management professionals of Internal Control Services from Montenegro, Norway, Serbia and Hungary as well as experts from international organizations in order to exchange views on normative standards, organizational models, best practices and experience. Ideas about what can strengthen the integrity of Internal Control mechanisms were also exchanged.

Fruitful study visit from Kosovo to Croatian Ministry of Defence

croatia-visitAs part of our project “Strengthening Human Resources Management in the Ministry of Kosovo Security Forces (MKSF)”, CIDS organised a study visit to the Croatian Ministry of Defence (MoD) on 9-11 November, 2016. The Kosovo delegation consisted of six members of the MKSF Department of Human Resources, led by Colonel Skender Zhitia. CIDS´s regional expert Mr Florian Qehaja was leading the delegation through their two-day visit to Zagreb.

During the visit, the MKSF delegation learned about Croatian experiences in issues of planning and recruitment of human resources. Drawing on their recent integration process with the EU, the Croatians shared their knowledge and expertise on highly relevant issues. There were lively discussions on recruitment of civilians and the equivalence between military officers and civilians. MKSF delegation also shared their experience in managing with human resources especially by focusing on the carrier progression and promotion.

This is a second CIDS study visit as part of Norwegian bilateral assistance to Kosovo. CIDS would like to thank again our colleagues in the Croatian MoD for their kind hospitality and for sharing their expertise on building integrity with us.



CIDS cooperation with the National Agency of Ukraine on Corruption Prevention (NACP)

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The Letter of Intent on cooperation between two organizations was signed on 18 of October in Kyiv. As the Head of the NACP Nataliya Korchak noticed, the document will give us the possibility to implement the Norwegian experience in preventing corruption and will be a substantial support in ensuring professionalism and integrity in the defence sector.

CIDS intends to assist the Ukrainian side in developing methodologies for identifying risks of corruption as well as other measures that will contribute to reducing risks of corruption in the the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine under the State Program on the implementation of the state anti-corruption policy in Ukraine (the Anti-Corruption Strategy) for 2015 – 2017 and the Law of Ukraine On Prevention of Corruption.

The NACP is a newly created central executive body with a special status. It ensures developing and realization of the state anticorruption policy.

New initiative to strengthen integrity in defence

strenghten-iidJanuary 1st, 2016, the Norwegian Defence Materiel Agency (NDMA) was established under the Ministry of Defence. NDMA is the authority for procurement to the armed forces and the current level of activity is about 200 different materiel projects. Procurement and maintenance of materiel amounts to about 30 % of the Norwegian defence budget. The new Agency counts some 1300 employees. About 60 % of them are civilians and the remaining 40 % military.

As pointed out by Transparency International defence procurement may include a considerable risk of corruption through, for example, conflict of interest, bribes, or other unethical behaviour. Two reasons for this are the amount of money involved and the traditional secrecy in security and defence. This is why high ethical standards are crucial, together with robust integrity systems, integrity plans that identify and correct weaknesses, and systematic training of personnel.

The Centre for Integrity in the Defence Sector (CIDS) has now signed a support agreement with NDMA in order for CIDS to assist in the implementation of NDMA’s comprehensive integrity plan. Ms. Mette Sørfonden, Director of NDMA, signed the agreement on behalf of NDMA and Mr. Per Christensen, Director of CIDS, on behalf of CIDS. The MoD’s Armaments Director, Mr. Morten Tiller, attended the ceremony and stated that the agreement was important as seen from the MoD. The Norwegian MoD gives integrity and high ethical standards high priority and is pleased that CIDS, as a tool for the MoD, now brings its cooperation to support the Norwegian defence sector to a new level.

Even if Norway received a high score on Transparency International’s Government Defence Anti-Corruption Index 2015, there are still some weaknesses left and a need to systematically go through all risk factors. There is broad agreement that an integrity plan is the right tool to do so, and the MoD expects all Norwegian defence agencies, including the Armed forces, to continue pursuing that work with high priority.

The five components in NDMA’s integrity plan are partly a direct follow-up of the former program in the Norwegian defence sector called “Attitudes, Ethics, and Leadership”. CIDS will assist the NDMA in reaching 19 part objectives in the integrity plan.

Link: Avtale om støtte i implementeringen av Forsvarsmateriells integritetsprogram mellom Forsvarsmateriell (FMA) og Senter for integritet i forsvarssektoren (SIFS).

CIDS report on “Ensuring professionalism and integrity in the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine” launched in Kyiv

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On 17 October 2016 the CIDS report: “Ensuring professionalism and integrity in the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine” was handed over to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence by CIDS’ Director, Mr. Per A Christensen. The report is also available in a Ukraine language version: Забезпечення професіоналізму і доброчесності у Міністерстві оборони України.

The report includes proposals on steps to be taken in the follow-up phase of the project. The most important next step will be to agree on the priorities in the implementation plan, before the end of the year.

In early 2015 CIDS and the Ministry of Defence (MoD) of Ukraine agreed in principle for CIDS to assist the MoD of Ukraine through a project of reform of the Human Resources Management (HRM) in the MoD of Ukraine. The resulting four-year programme (2015-2018) of bilateral cooperation between the two Ministries was formally signed when the Norwegian State Secretary of Defence, Mr. Øystein Bø, visited Kyiv in June 2015.

Since the summer of 2015 CIDS’ expert team has been working closely with the project group in the MoD of Ukraine to establish valid documentation of the situation and to map in greater detail the measures that CIDS would recommend to be taken. That work was followed by more detailed work plans and a comprehensive programme of steps to be taken. During more than one and a half years, cooperation has been very close, reciprocal, and characterized by openness and trust. Plans have been refined, measures tested out and implemented, and CIDS’ expert team has spent considerable time in Kyiv. CIDS has a permanent local project office in Kyiv with three local experts.

At the launch of the report, Deputy Minister of Defence, Lieutenant General Oleksandr Dublyan, expressed deep appreciation for all the work done so far and highlighted the strong commitment from the Ukraine side. Also, the Deputy Minister pointed out that the MoD since the summer of 2016 already had taken measures to increase civilian and democratic control of the defence system by, among other things, downsizing the MoD through the reduction of a substantial number of military positions. He also pointed out, with a reference to Ukraine’s Strategic Defence Bulletin, that the position as Minister of Defence would be converted to a civilian position from the end of 2017. LtGen Dublyan emphasized that despite the ongoing war with Russia in the East, the Ukrainian MoD realized that institutional reform in the defence system had to take place, despite the other serious challenges that Ukraine faces at the same time.

Mr. Christensen welcomed the transparency, cooperation and friendliness that had been prominent throughout the work done over the past year. The new report was a telling measure of success. Although not all findings and proposed measures necessarily are popular with everybody, and even could be regarded as uncomfortable by some, they represent a fair documentation of the current situation and will provide a solid basis for correcting identified gaps. The report also lists several areas where the prospects for real reform are good, for example, as a result of the legal foundation put in place with the newly implemented Law on Civil Service.

The shortfalls identified in the report are largely the consequences of history and tradition, which also explain the complexity of a thorough reform process. So, even on the basis of a solid implementation plan, there will be no quick fix to make dramatic change over night.

Among the many important issues raised in the report, civil servants need to be provided with adequate protection to ensure that they are free to provide independent professional advice to their superiors as well as to their political masters. Protection of whistleblowers who report corruption is one element of that, the need to protect professional integrity in case of unwarranted political pressure another one.

Furthermore, the Ukrainian MoD will have to strike a balance between the size of the institution and salary level. Salaries need to be high enough to attract and retain the needed competence over time. Proper competence will be a key to efficient management of the defence sector.

The Ukrainian MoD project group, the local CIDS office in Kyiv as well as CIDS’ Norwegian and international experts will continue to work together in the same fashion that has been developed since 2015. It has proved to be a very successful model.

Link: Norwegian CIDS experts render report on corruption risks reduction in Ukraine’s MoD HR management system.

NATO BI Discipline Conference 2016

The 2016 NATO Building Integrity (BI) Discipline Conference was hosted at NATO’s Joint Warfare Centre (JWC) in Stavanger, Norway from 28 to 29 September. The Centre for Integrity in the Defence Sector (CIDS) organized the conference in cooperation with NATO HQ in Brussels and Allied Command Transformation (ACT). Experts and stakeholders from the NATO command structure, JWC, 1st German-Netherlands Corps, UK Defence Academy, Transparency International, Belgrade Centre for Security Policy, NATO’s CIMIC (civil-military) Centre of Excellence, Peace Support Operations Centre, and subject matter experts from the United States and Romania participated in the discussions. Panels on education, training and exercises, as well as on military doctrines, discussed how to counter corruption in a theatre of operations and contributed to the successful conclusion of the conference.

Deputy Commander and Chief of Staff at JWC, Rear Admiral John B. Skillman, welcomed the participants. He pointed out that the aim of the conference was to explore and identify potential solutions for existing gaps in NATO’s Building Integrity Programme in the field of Education and Training requirements, and to further develop BI as a NATO discipline.

“Corruption has grown over the last several decades with devastating effects on, inter alia, security and stability. And leaders worldwide recognize that corruption is a major threat to global security,” said Dr Alberto Bin from NATO’s International Staff.

CIDS’ director, Mr Per Christensen, in his introductory remarks emphasized the operational importance of dealing with corruption. He concluded that an operational commander would have a greater chance of accomplishing the mission objectives if corruption in the area of operations is successfully dealt with.

“If you send out people not prepared to handle corruption, we are in danger of putting them into a very tricky situation, because all of our countries, I think, have legislation that makes it illegal to be involved in corruption, also abroad. So both from a legal and a moral point of view we need to prepare ourselves, and that’s why our conference is so important,” said Mr Christensen.

The conference also focused on refining the implementation of integrity building in education, training and exercises – in NATO as well as among Allies and partner nations.

Dr Alberto Bin spoke about NATO’s BI policy that was endorsed at the NATO Summit in Warsaw, and on the development of a follow-up action plan. The audience was reminded that throughout history and across cultures corruption has always existed; however, this phenomenon has grown increasingly sophisticated over the last several decades with devastating effects on security and stability. Leaders worldwide increasingly recognize that corruption is a major threat to global security. An obvious consequence of such recognition is that both NATO and NATO’s partner countries should substantially increase their commitment to fight corruption –  “because this has clearly strategic implications and becomes a strategic imperative more and more.”

“At the most recent NATO Summit in Warsaw in July 2016 our leaders underlined NATO as a community of values. And it is on this basis that those same leaders endorsed a NATO building integrity policy which in our view represents a milestone in terms of NATO’s commitment to strengthen integrity, transparency, and accountability, and good governance in the defence and security sector,” said Dr Bin.

During the two-day conference, integrity building within defence institutions and in military operations was discussed with a view to updating the annual BI Discipline Alignment Plan (ADP). To reach a common understanding of the overall education and training challenges, as well as agreeing on what actions should be taken in order to meet future challenges, were among the most central topics. Following the NATO BI Policy that was endorsed at the NATO Summit in Warsaw, work on an implementation plan is in progress. This plan will ensure that measures needed to bring BI to the next level will be properly addressed. The objective is good governance in the defence sector, as well as an increased awareness of the consequences of a lack of integrity and high standards in defence institutions as well as in military operations.


Conference Photos

CIDS launches the fourth GGG – Access to information and limits to public transparency

Centre for Integrity in the Defence Sector (CIDS) has launched a new issue in its Guide for Good Governance series: Access to information and limits to public transparency. This guide is the fourth in a series of booklets discussing best international standards and practises in areas of public administration that are crucial to good governance. CIDS’ international expert, Francisco Cardona – a Spanish national with broad experience from OECD’s unit Support for Improvement in Governance and Management, SIGMA – is the author of the new guide.

The new guide summarizes international best practices in the area of public access to information. It is a challenge to strike the right balance between public access to information and the state’s legitimate right to protect certain information. This is particularly challenging with regard to defence, where secrecy is to some extent a necessity. However, the other side of the coin is the need to protect legitimate good-faith whistleblowing. Wrongdoings and abuse of money, power or public trust should not be protected by limits to public information.
The GGG series is written for a broad audience both within the public and defence sectors and outside. The booklets may be used as background reading for all who are interested in good governance in the defence sector and in the public sector more generally. The three first issues address Professionalism and integrity in the public service, Tackling conflicts of interest in the public sector, and Anti-corruption policies and agencies.

Download the booklet (PDF document)