2015 To Walk the Earth in Safety: The Senior Managers' Course in ERW and Mine Action

Report
Bureau of Political-Military Affairs

Date: 2015 Description: The Regional Senior Managers' Course, facilitated by CISR, was held in Dushanbe, Tajikistan in May 2014.  © Photo courtesy of CISR.

The Center for International Stabilization and Recovery (CISR) at James Madison University’s (JMU) Senior Managers’ Courses bring together senior-level managers from mine action organizations to study organizational management skills, and to meet fellow experts from other countries to share expertise and exchange best practices in landmine and unexploded ordnance clearance. Sponsored by PM/WRA, participants refine their program management and strategic planning skills while developing a professional network for collaboration with classmates, JMU faculty, international experts, CISR staff, and PM/WRA personnel.

After hosting nine Senior Managers’ Courses on the JMU campus in Harrisonburg, Virginia, CISR went international, launching its first regional training course in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, in 2014. CISR collaborated closely with the Tajikistan National Mine Action Centre (TNMAC) to bring 24 participants from Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Nepal, Tajikistan, and Yemen to Tajikistan for three weeks of classroom and field-based instruction.

CISR staff led the instruction in conjunction with JMU College of Business faculty, PM/WRA staff, and guest lecturers from Swiss Foundation for Mine Action (FSD), Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and TNMAC, contributing field-based expertise and program implementation experience on the management of ammunition and weapons stockpiles, and survivor assistance support programs. The regional setting also allowed participants to visit an NPA worksite near Tajikistan’s border with Afghanistan, where they met with Tajikistan’s first all-female demining team.

Since 2010, 90 participants from 24 ERW- and mine-affected countries have completed the training. Graduates of the course come from Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Cambodia, Colombia, Croatia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Iraq, Jordan, Laos, Lebanon, Libya, Nepal, Senegal, Slovenia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tajikistan, Uganda, Vietnam, and Yemen. Senior Managers’ Course graduates return to their national programs with the necessary skills to more effectively perform their crucial humanitarian work and with access to many new contacts and resources.

The regional focus continues in the fall of 2015 when CISR hosts a Regional Senior Managers’ Course for Southeast Asia in Vietnam.

Point of Contact:
Suzanne Fiederlein, Ph.D.
Associate Director
Center for International Stabilization & Recovery
James Madison University
800 South Main Street, MSC 2801
Harrisonburg, Virginia, USA 22807

telephone: +1 540 568 5715
website: http://www.jmu.edu/cisr/programs/training.shtml