ISS is an applied policy research institute active in sub-Saharan Africa with expertise in the research, publication, facilitation, capacity building, and monitoring of most aspects of the human security agenda in Africa. The institute's vision is that of a stable and peaceful Africa, characterized by human rights, the rule of law, democracy, and collaborative security. These issues reflect the core values of ISS and guide its external interactions. ISS seldom takes a common or institutional position on issues but allows differences in opinion and interpretation. Formally, ISS's mission is to conceptualize, inform, and enhance the security debate in and on Africa through independent applied research and analysis, formulating and influencing relevant policy-making, raising the awareness of decision-makers and the public, monitoring trends and policy implementation, and focusing on capacity building. In general, ISS's activities have moved toward capacity building at a senior level as an increasing component of its engagement, interpreting expert workshops and assistance with policy development and the monitoring of policy implementation as part of such capacity building.