Maritime Capacity Building in the Horn of Africa: States of Somalia

Research output: Working paper

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Maritime capacity building in the States of Somalia remains a relatively recent activity, with few initiatives dating back more than five or six years. In this time, it has undoubtedly had a positive impact in some areas. However, the success of these activities has been narrow and uneven. They have been able to strengthen pockets of capacity in specific organisations and institutions, but they have done so in a manner that has not always been well coordinated with other donor activities or local priorities, and in an environment of wider political, economic and institutional weaknesses that have constrained their impact and on which they have been dependent. Given the scale of the challenge, the transnational and regionally situated nature of the maritime problem space, and the timescales over which such activities have taken place, it is perhaps not surprising that they have struggled to be transformative in nature. Even so, the extent to which they have often taken place in the absence of local involvement at the levels of problem identification and project development and evaluation is also notable. This deficit has led to a ‘thin’ rather than ‘thick’ legitimacy amongst local actors, and has exacerbated existing challenges of relevance, duplication and sustainability.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2017


  • Maritime Security
  • Capacity Building
  • Somalia
  • Somaliland
  • Horn of Africa
  • Security Sector Refrom
  • Horizon 2020


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