Private Security, Military Professionals and the State

Authored by: Joakim Berndtsson

The Routledge Research Companion to Security Outsourcing in the Twenty-first Century

Print publication date:  June  2016
Online publication date:  June  2016

Print ISBN: 9781472426833
eBook ISBN: 9781315613376
Adobe ISBN: 9781317042228


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This chapter focuses on one particular aspect of security outsourcing in conflict environments, namely the relationship between private security actors and the military. As many analysts have observed, the increasing reliance on PSCs adds a commercial component to military operations, raising concerns about increasing complexity of military and civilian operations, a potential lack of state control of force, and questions about the impact of outsourcing on civil-military or PSC-military cooperation and coordination on the ground. In addition, security and military outsourcing also means increasing competition over security expertise and military professionalism. As outsourcing expands, militaries, security services and PSCs compete to some degree for the same resources or people, potentially impacting on recruitment as well as retention in both armed and civil services and challenging established notions of who can be considered a military or a security professional.

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