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Many more authors have published articles focusing on PMCs/PSCs and the privatization of security broadly. However, most of the authors listed here have a knowledge rather than a status-drive approach and want their work known. Incidentaly, this is the type of experts (and organizations) that are willing to engage in debate and, from university and conference corridors to forums and sociasl media communities, that are likely to reply to your comments and questions. At we encourage the free dissemination of resources. Thus, if you want your work listed here, please CONTACT US.
2010 - 2015
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BAKER, Deane-Peter and James PATTISON. The Principled Case for Employing Private Military and Security Companies in Interventions for Human Rights Purposes. Journal of Applied Philosophy, (2012) 29 (1), pp. 1–18: PDF

ABSTRACT: The possibility of using private military and security companies to bolster the capacity to undertake intervention for human rights purposes (humanitarian intervention and peacekeeping) has been increasingly debated.The focus of such discussions has, however, largely been on practical issues and the contingent problems posed by private force. By contrast, this article considers the principled case for privatising humanitarian intervention. It focuses on two central issues. First, does outsourcing humanitarian intervention to private military and security companies pose some fundamental, deeper problems in this context, such as an abdication of a state’s duties? Second, on the other hand, is there a case for preferring these firms to other, state-based agents of humanitarian intervention? For instance,given a state’s duties to their own military personnel, should the use of private military and security contractors be preferred to regular soldiers for humanitarian intervention?


HIGATE, Paul. Aversions to Masculine Excess in the Private Military and Security Company and their Effects: Don’t Be a “Billy Big Bollocks” and beware the “Ninja!” School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies, University of Bristol, Working Paper No. 08-12: PDF, 2012 (not dated): PDF

ABSTRACT: Critical gender scholars of PMSCs have used the term 'remasculinization' to capture the implications of the industry's pluralisation of military and militarized masculinities in ways intended to provide legitimacy for the industry and in turn, to render it attractive to potential clients. Drawing on participant observation of a training course in the US designed for potential contractors aspiring to work in the armed Close Protection role, this paper considers instructor narratives of the 'professional' versus the 'Billy Big Bollocks' or 'Ninja' noted to undermine the industry through his hypermasculine approach to security work. I conclude by showing how these narratives play a role in legitimating the wider industry through their focus on who -or which kind of masculinity- has the right to use violence. Implicit in these narratives is the inevitablity of the industry and its use of violence that overlooks the geopolitical relevance of PMSCs in their wider sense.


KRAHMANN, Elke and Friesendorf, Cornelius. The Role of Private Security Companies (PSCs) in Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) Missions and Operations. European Union, Policy Department Directorate General External Policies EXPO/B/SEDE/FWC/2009-01/LOT6/10/REV1 April 2011: PDF

ABSTRACT: While the hiring of Private Security Companies (PSCs) such as Blackwater by the United States (US) has been the most widely reported and debated, the European Union (EU) and its member states are increasingly relying on private contractors in multilateral operations. Among others, the EU has em ployed private security gu ards to protect the EUPOL headquarters in Afghanistan, to secure the pr emises of the EULEX mission in Kosovo and to guard the EUPOL mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo). Due to the growing roles of PSCs in Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) operations, the EU and its member states urgently need to consider the possible impact that armed and unarmed security contractors can have on missions and the achievement of mission objectives. This report demonstrates that po tential negative effects rang e from decreased democratic accountability and governmental control to the perceptions of contractor impunity and insecurity among the civilian populations of ho st states. There is no catch-all solution to these problems, and for many governments the advantages of hiring private security contractors, such as the ability to fill urgent capability and personne l gaps, cost-efficiency and specialist expertise, outweigh the disa dvantages. Given the current financial and personnel constraints in Europe, it is likely that the us e of PSCs will further increase. It is therefore imperative to develo p appropriate mechanisms to address the possible problems of such use before they occur. This report de velops five specific recommendations for EU action that would help address risks associated with the increasing use of Private Military and Security Companies.


KUMAR NANDI,Tanay and MOHANTY,Satabdee. The Emergence of Private Military Firms and Their Impact on Global Human Rights. Occasional paper by two final year students at the National Law University (Jodhpur) and Gujarat National Law University (Gandhinagar), India, April 2010: PDF

ABSTRACT: Arising out of the dying embers of the Cold War, private military firms (PMFs) market their military force and skills primarily to decolonialized States, countries overrun with domestic conflict and unable to provide effectively for their own security needs. As a result, PMFs amass unchecked power to affect conflict resolution, world economic stability, and geostrategic negotiations. Indeed, as corporations become larger --both economically and politically-- corporate managers increasingly engage in decision-making traditionally exercised by politicians. The decentralization of international security from state-organized militaries not only threatens the traditional Westphalian model of state-monopolized force, but also accentuates the inability of international law to hold private actors accountable for their unchecked violation of basic human rights in conflict ridden regions.


LIU, Hin-Yan. Mercenaries in Libya: Ramifications of the Treatment of ‘Armed Mercenary Personnel’ under the Arms Embargo for Private Military Company Contractors Journal of Conflict and Security Law (2011) 16(2), 293–319: PDF

ABSTRACT: The inclusion of ‘armed mercenary personnel’ within the terms of the arms em- bargo imposed upon Libya in SC Resolution 1970, and further elaborated in SC Resolution 1973, although largely unnoticed, holds three significant implications. First, there is the apparent reduction of mercenary personnel from the category of combatancy to that of a method or means of warfare. This may have the subtle effect of reducing or eliminating the human dimension in any such persons. Secondly, there is an implicit departure from the notoriously restrictive definition of ‘mercenary’ under international law. While this may have the welcomed effect of reinvigorating the stigmatising appellation and renew its potential utility such an inference may not only be subject to a semantic explanation but further ob- fuscate what objectionable characteristics are being targeted. Thirdly, the explicit use of the broader term ‘armed mercenary personnel’ is likely to include a significant category of contractors working for Private Military Companies (PMCs). The effect of this is not only to deny armed PMC contractors access to Libyan territory, but crucially illuminates their close proximity to the stigma- tised individual mercenary, as defined under international law; the result will be to elucidate the contrived and artificial nature of the legal distinction between the traditional mercenary and the armed PMC contractor. This proximity questions the appropriateness of recent British suggestions of employing PMCs to aid Libyan rebels and may act as a yardstick by which to gauge contemporary regulation frameworks.


LIU, Hin-Yan. Leashing the Corporate Dogs of War: The Legal Implications of the Modern Private Military Company. Journal of Conflict and Security Law (2010) 15(1), 141–168: PDF

ABSTRACT: The modern private military company (PMC) is a company that provides martial services through a corporate legal framework, and as such is the contemporary heir to private force providers of the past. This paper challenges the idea that modern PMCs operate in an alleged legal ‘vacuum’, and instead shows that there is a wide array of potentially applicable instruments. This paper addresses this patchwork of law primarily through the lens of mercenarism, first through proscribing interna- tional instruments followed subsequently by utilizing South Africa and the United Kingdom as the poles of their domestic counterpart responses. The rights and obli- gations of PMCs and its employees are then considered in the context of Interna- tional Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law, and tentative steps are taken towards considering their liability for war crimes. An attempt is made to advocate for state responsibility of PMC actions to both control their operational excesses and encourage states to address the phenomenon in a unified fashion. At the same time, the paper acknowledges the fact that state responsibility is not the panacea as claimed by some commentators; an analysis of a case study involving the sale of the Indonesian military’s services to private interest shows that the privatization of forces is more than simply about the form of its organizational structure. The paper concludes that the PMC activity should nevertheless be included within the state framework to utilize the strength of both International Humanitarian and Human Rights Law.

MACHAIRAS, Dimitrios. The Ethical Implications of the Use of Private Military Force: Regulatable or Irreconcilable? Journal of Military Ethics, vol 13, no 1, May 2014: Download available to Taylor & Francis subscribers

ABSTRACT: This paper attempts to present an examination of the ethical/normative ramifications involved with the growing use of private military and security companies, provide some original insight, and probe the question of the degree to which potential regulatory efforts can effectively address the nature of the moral concerns thereby raised. The implications examined focus mainly on relevant principles and concepts of the just war tradition and how they relate to the issue of state control over military action, as well as the ethical/political consequences of public accountability and democratic control over force. The paper concludes that the use of private military force is currently still inconsistent with well-established ethical norms to a significant degree, perhaps one that cannot be easily overcome through legal instruments without a corresponding shift in the ethics of warfare itself.


ORTIZ, Carlos. The new public management of security: the contracting and managerial state and the private military industry. Public Money & Management, vol. 30, no. 1, 2010 , 35–41: PDF

ABSTRACT: Private military companies (PMCs) do not often figure as a case study alongside topics such as health and local government in the public management literature. However, this article shows that public management offers critical insights into the reasons why governments contract services to the private military industry. In particular, the article analyses the deep inroads that reforms inspired by new public management have made into the management of defence and security functions since the 1990s, as well as the partnerships established between authorities and PMCs. A key motivation behind such policies has been to raise the efficiency and effectiveness of security provision. However, there have also been some unexpected problems, which are addressed in the article. The conclusions highlight that, despite many imperfections, states will increasingly provide security with the assistance of PMCs.


ØSTENSEN, Åse Gilje, UN Use of Private Military and Security Companies: Practices and Policies. The Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). SSR Papers no 3, Geneva, 2011: PDF

INTRODUCTION: (...) Whether PMSCs constitute a menace or a blessing has been a matter of contentious debate. This paper does not discuss the potential contribution of PMSCs to peace, security or other UN objectives. Instead, it looks at how some parts of the UN system make use of these companies and tries to trace the demand to internal and external challenges. Furthermore, the paper addresses whether there are established guidelines or policies governing PMSC use in different parts of the organisation, whether practices comply with them, or if PMSCs are used more as ad hoc ‘band‐aids’ in response to extreme operating environments.


PATTISON, James. The Legitimacy of the Military, Private Military and Security Companies, and Just War Theory. European Journal of Political Theory. (2012) 11 (2), pp. 131–54: WORD

ABSTRACT: The legitimacy of the military is frequently overlooked in standard accounts of jus ad bellum. Accordingly, this paper considers how the military should be organised. It proposes a normative conception of legitimacy—the ‘Moderate Instrumentalist Approach’—that outlines the qualities that a military should possess. It then assesses the three leading ways of organizing the military according to this approach: the use of private military and security companies (PMSCs), a conscripted force and the all-volunteer force (AVF). The paper argues that the AVF, despite some notable problems, is the most legitimate way of organising the military.


PINGEOT, Lou. Dangerous Partnership Private Military & Security Companies and the UN. Global Policy Forum + Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, New York, June 2012: PDF

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The United Nations is increasingly hiring Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs) for a wide array of se - curity services. The UN’s leadership says these services are needed to protect the organization’s staff and worldwide operations from growing threats and unprecedented dan - gers. But many reports from governments, NGOs and the media have shown how PMSCs have committed serious human rights abuse. (...)

Profiles and further resources from organizations such as the GPF can be found at our NGOs pages


RAND Corporation (Sarah K. Cotton, Ulrich Petersohn, Molly Dunigan, Q Burkhart, Megan Zander-Cotugno, Edward O’Connell, Michael Webber). Hired Guns. Views About Armed Contractors in Operation Iraqi Freedom. RAND, 2010: PDF

PREFACE: This research was sponsored by the Smith Richardson Foundation and conducted within the International Security and Defense Policy Center of the RAND National Security Research Division (NSRD). NSRD conducts research and analysis for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Joint Staff, the Unified Combatant Commands, the defense agencies, the Navy, the Marine Corps, the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Intelligence Community, allied foreign governments, and foundations .


RAND Corporation | Market for Force project, 2010-2011| Coordinators: Molly Dunigan and Ulrich Petersohn | Discusants: Allison Stanger, Elke Krahmann, Deborah Avant | ISA Montreal 2011 papers

BENNETT, Jody Ray. Country Profile on the Market for Force: India

CARMOLA, Kateri. American Private Military Contracting: From Cowboys to Corporate Consultants

CATALLO, Jennifer. China 's Managed "Market for Force"

FITZSIMMONS, Scott. The Externally-Focused Market for Combat Services in the United States

GUMEDZE, Sabelo. The Markets for Force: South Africa

JASKOSKI, Maiah. Battalions for Hire: Private Army Contracts in Peru and Ecuador

LEANDER, Anna. Private Providers of Public Goods: The Private (In)security Industry in Denmark

ORTIZ, Carlos. The Market for Force in the U.K. : The Recasting of the Monopoly of Violence and the Management of Force as a Public-Private Enterprise

SHERMAN, Jake. The Markets for Force: Afghanistan Case Study

SPEARIN, Christopher. The Canadian Market for Force: A Purchaser/Provider Analysis

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