The Institute for Security Studies (ISS) is a pan-African applied policy research institute headquartered in Pretoria, South Africa with offices in Cape Town, South Africa, Nairobi, Kenya, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Dakar, Senegal. The ISS is an established think tank working in the area of African human security. It seeks to mainstream human security perspectives into public policy processes and to influence decision makers within Africa and beyond. The objective of the Institute is to add critical balance and objectivity by providing timely, empirical research and contextual analysis of relevant human security issues to policy makers, area specialists, advocacy groups, and the media.
The ISS was founded in 1991 by the current Executive Director, Dr. Jakkie Cilliers and P. B. Mertz as the Institute for Defence Policy, which was renamed in 1996 as the Institute for Security Studies.