The Promise of Acceptance: Insights into acceptance as a security management approach from field research in Kenya, South Sudan, and Uganda

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Save the Children

The primary objective of this project was to document how NGOs understand and implement acceptance. The project’s rationale emerged from the observation that there is a lack of research and documentation on what an acceptance approach to security management entails, and under what circumstances it can be effective. While many organizations ascribe to an acceptance approach to security management, most lack policies, procedures, and tools to implement that approach or collect evidence related to the effectiveness of the approach.

The report first discusses crosscutting findings from the project’s field research on acceptance in Kenya, South Sudan, and Uganda. The following three questions helped lead the research:

  1. How do organizations gain and maintain acceptance?
  2. How do organizations assess and monitor the presence and degree of acceptance? (In other words, how do organizations know whether they are accepted?)
  3. How do organizations determine whether acceptance is effective in a particular context? (In other words, does acceptance work?)

The second section of the report revisits the conceptual framework of acceptance as articulated in the White Paper, reflecting on the ways in which learning from the field research informed and modified our original conceptualization of the key components and challenges of acceptance. The concluding section provides concrete policy recommendations and next steps for research and organizational development related to acceptance.

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