n Conflict Trends - Rethinking peace and security in Africa : ECOWAS, a human security regime?

Volume 2010, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1561-9818


The collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War set out a new comprehensive - but controversial - framework for security studies. On one hand, traditionalists argue that this discipline should be about "the study of the threat, use and control of military force". On the other hand, a group of academics have proposed a different focus, which includes non-military threats and a new approach to other types of security - economic, political, environmental and societal. Between these two approaches, a new approach to security emerges - with the idea that threats go beyond national borders and the defence of the state to encompass all issues that may guarantee freedom from fear and freedom from want. This people-centred approach is what is known as human security.

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