The UK’s Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF)

The UK’s Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) launched on 01 April 2015. This new funding instrument has replaced the Conflict (Prevention) Pool. The UK has allocated CSS Funds for Iraq.

The CSSF is one part of a broader approach to UK prioritisation in fragile and conflict affected states, and it is governed by the UK’s National Security Council (NSC).

The CSSF will support delivery of the UK’s Building Stability Overseas Strategy (BSOS), the National Security Strategy 2010, and the Strategic Defence and Security Review, using the full range of UK government capabilities and expertise in tackling conflict, instability and insecurity. The Fund will build upon the successful activity of the Conflict Pool, expanding to include a wider range of activities and approaches across government.

Compared to the Conflict Pool, the CSSF has a more of a top-down approach with more NSC oversight and an emphasis on in-county impact. The Conflict Pool was more bottom-up with Posts receiving bids from partners and these then being tailored to Post’s objectives. The CSSF will encourage fewer, larger, more strategic effects which complement existing HMG in-country efforts, while at the same time maintaining the ability to fund more experimental pilot, and high risk ventures.

IRAQ AND THE CSSF In Iraq, the CSSF will mainly focus on stabilisation activities which have the potential to have a significant across three thematic areas: Political Reconciliation; Community Cohesion and Security. Approx 80% of Iraq’s CSSF allocation will be targeted at eligible Official Development Assistance (ODA) activity.

CALLS FOR BIDS – IRAQ We expect to announce targeted Calls for Bids two to three times per year. The dates for these Calls are not fixed annually. These Calls will provide further information on the thematic area and issues that we hope to address and the criteria that we will use to evaluate bids.

Please note that the CSSF is just one of a number of UK programme funds. The British Embassy Baghdad may advertise calls for bids for different priority areas including but not limited to – Human Rights and Democracy (the next call for bids for Financial Year 16/17 projects will take place at the end of 2015); Prosperity and Bilateral projects.

After the recent PQ that revealed the UK has deployed Gender Advisers to help the Kurds, yes, those Kurds, it is really hard to avoid banging one’s head against the desk at the disconnect between well-intentioned, achingly political correct terminology, and the reality.


The revised, refreshed and renamed conflict prevention doesn’t disappoint and gets off to a cracking start with a couple of calls for bids.

NOW OPEN – Political Reconciliation Call for Bids – Deadline 22 July 2015 Click here for more details.

NOW OPEN – Community Cohesion Call for Bids – Deadline 29 July 2015 Click here for more details.

Dare you to read them, double dare you!.

Remember folks, this is inside the MoD’s budget tent now, roll on 2% of GDP by spending on community cohesion projects in Iraq and gender training for the Kurds.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
From Luddite Lodge
From Luddite Lodge
July 10, 2015 8:28 am

Well, they can’t blame Clegg and the Lib Dems for this.
Your country is torn apart by war, mass crucifixions , beheadings , starvation and we supply gender training.
This has got to be a wind-up

July 10, 2015 8:32 am

So before anyone starts, the Conflict Pool and CSSF is supposed to be a separate HM Treasury funded mechanism, managed broadly by the Stabilisation Unit (SU). (The SU you can find a bit more online but that’s another tale). Meaning it is not a MOD Budget, nor a DFID (yes) or a FCO-funded unit. So supposedly, it is not adding to 0.7% or 2.0%….

Is the CP and now the CSSF an effective tool? I know many will say damn aid, the money should go to hard defence. Then again, how far has hard defence (personnel or equipment) done to solve global security challenges–post Iraq, Afghanistan, SL (2000s), Balkans, Africa…

The CSSF is new, let’s see how it builds on the output of the CP and how the SU (which is tri-department managed) uses it.

July 10, 2015 8:41 am

Well, if you don’t want soft power, show me exactly how hard power has achieved victory in ALL conflicts. I said all.

July 10, 2015 8:54 am

Gender advice is not fairy tales – its about getting 50% of the population engaged in resisting ISIL. If you want to know why, look no further than the floods of women (and thier children) leaving the UK to joint ISIL and the motivation for ISIL to recruit women. The influence of women on radicalisation is not a frippery, its core. Among the Kurdish resistance women play an important role, it makes sense to support them to continue to do so.

Ian Skinner
Ian Skinner
July 10, 2015 9:11 am

Does Gender Advice include training female Kurdish snipers?

July 10, 2015 9:17 am
Reply to  Ian Skinner

probably not – but it might work with the Kurdish leadership to get them childcare, defferred school/university places and support thier families so that more of them can take up the fight.

July 10, 2015 12:07 pm

“Among the Kurdish resistance women play an important role, it makes sense to support them to continue to do so.”
I think if its our own advisors they will need to task themselves with how the Kurds have managed to achieve what they have with in their culture specific traditions. Lessons to be passed on within other muslim communities engaged in life and death struggles.

A Caribbean Perspective
A Caribbean Perspective
July 10, 2015 12:52 pm

@Monkey – it’s probably also relevant that the Kurds had Islam imposed on hem. Their traditional religion was Zoroastrianism. Despite many centuries of adherence to the “new” religion, there are considerable differences in the underlying culture and traditions.

Gloomy Northern Boy
Gloomy Northern Boy
July 10, 2015 3:42 pm

…the Kurds have tough infantrywomen, perfectly happy to cut throats…maybe the Gender Advisers are taking lessons in integrating British Servicewomen into the Paras? :-)


July 10, 2015 5:23 pm

Maybe the gender advisers are British servicewomen, equally happy to cut throats?

July 10, 2015 6:08 pm

Their journey to now has been similar though to many other groups who have submitted to the word of God and parallels and insights might be gleaned. Much of North Africa was following the Coptic Church before conversion, the sub- Saharan region following various Animist religions . It could be said a good bit of early Christian conversions choose to incorporate local dates and beliefs to ease the path of conversion too.
I think a century ago they would of been perceived a lot less differences between ourselves and the people who have rejected modern western views on the female role in our society. Was it accepted for at least unmarried women of ‘class’ to be un-chaperoned in public? Did they have a say in life via say the vote? How many held professional status jobs, lawyers,doctors,surgeons,engineers,scientists,soldiers,clergy etc? How many were published authors,acclaimed artists,journalists,poets? How many champions of business? Not very many , very low single figure percentages if any. Now the west bangs the drum of equality and this strike a discord of fear or just incomprehension of (at least out of the close familial home) changing a hugely male dominated society. Just being able to talk with a female outside of the extended family group must strike as being ‘wrong’ and very uncomfortable as the strict hierarchal boundaries are not clear i.e. not his mother,daughter,sister,wife,aunt,daughter-in-law etc. Then have her believe she is his equal or even superior and confusion reigns. And were confusion and lack of understanding arise with someone who has ‘power’ often a negative reaction ensues. I personally think trying to instigate gender awareness education without a peaceful and stable background is fraught with difficulties. However if the member of a mans group happens to be female and gently reminds him of her inalienable rights with her AK , good for her

A Caribbean Perspective
A Caribbean Perspective
July 10, 2015 7:20 pm
Reply to  monkey

@Monkey. The Middle East is far more nuanced than we see in the Western press (I have some experience of parts of it, having spent a large part of my youth in Qatar, Iraq and Saudi). I spent several years of that time in both Basra and Kirkuk, so I have seen the differences in attitude myself between the Shia community of the South and the Kurdish community of the North. Much of what is now described as “Islamic standards” is actually a reflection of the mores and culture of the tribes of the Arabian peninsula, who were involved in the early spread of Islam. The Quran, for instance, may state that a woman must behave and dress modestly, but what constitutes “modest” to a Southern Arabian tribesman is completely different to what a Bosnian muslim would think. The differences are primarily ones of culture rather than specifically religion (though each, obviously, influences the other).