Following the long trail of critique that emerged from first- and second-generation security sector reform (SSR) programs, this paper introduces a new theoretical framework for the socio-political analysis of the security sector that will enhance the potential for reform and transformation. This introduction to the special issue gathers shared considerations among authors researching the security sector in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, and promotes a dialogue for the improvement of the analysis of the sector within its socio-political context. Drawing from Sociology of Power, we aim to provide analytical and theoretical tools in order to develop a new conception of the “security sector,” which differs from what mainstream academia, think tanks, and public policies have traditionally dealt with.

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