The Security-Development Nexus in Practice: Lessons Learned from the US Provincial Reconstruction Team in Panjshir in Afghanistan


The article holistically assesses the US application of security-development nexus (SDN) through the most known example of SDN in practice – provincial reconstruction teams (PRTs) – to elucidate what lessons learned can be drawn from there. The PRT's unique small footprint approach aimed to skip combat phases and focus on development in Panjshir. The research detected fourteen lessons learned from PRT's Panjshir wrongdoings and relatively successful initiatives. Lessons learned include defining mission objectives, early identification of instability sources, unified funding, emphasis on security sector reform, cultural awareness, empowering locals, and continuity in leadership and mission. PRT Panjshir's approach is debated, emphasizing managing, not fully resolving, complex conditions. Depending on contextual factors and learned lessons, the model's duplicability in future conflicts remains uncertain.

Zdeněk Rod, M.A., born 1996. He graduated from the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen with a Bachelor's and Master's degree in International Relations. He teaches security studies at the same university and is also completing his postgraduate studies in international relations, specializing in conflict resolution and security studies. He also co-runs a security consulting firm, Center for Security Consulting, and teaches security studies at Ambis University in Prague. Previously, he studied at the Universities of Ljubljana and Budapest and the European Security and Defence Academy in Brussels. He also worked at the Ministry of Defence in the Hybrid Threat Unit. He specializes in foreign security issues, hybrid threats and strategic communications.

Country: Czech Republic


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