Modular Small-arms-control Implementation Compendium (MOSAIC)

MOSAIC is a set of voluntary, practical guidance notes that each combine the best small-arms expertise in succinct, operational advice. MOSAIC is the result of a decade of coordinated work within the UN system. Modules from the compendium are used in well over half of Member States, assisting authorities around the world to improve their small-arms control measures.

All MOSAIC Modules

  • 02.10 Small arms and light weapons control in the context of preventing armed violence
  • 02.20 Small arms and light weapons control in the context of Security Sector Reform [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 02.30 Small arms and light weapons control in the context of Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration [AR] [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 03.10 National controls over the manufacture of SALW [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 03.20 National controls over the international transfer of SALW [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 03.21 National controls over the end-user and end-use of internationally transferred SALW [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 03.30 National regulation of civilian access to SALW [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 03.40 National coordination mechanisms on SALW control [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 03.50 Criminal justice responses to the illicit proliferation of small arms and light weapons [EN]
  • 03.60 Small arms and light weapons control in the context of gun-free zones [EN]
  • 04.10 Designing and implementing a National Action Plan [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 04.20 Designing and implementing community safety programming [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 04.30 Awareness-raising [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 04.40 Monitoring, evaluation and reporting [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 05.10 Conducting SALW surveys [EN] [FR]
  • 05.20 Stockpile management: Weapons [EN] [FR]
  • 05.30 Marking and recordkeeping [EN] [FR]
  • 05.31 Tracing illicit SALW [EN] [FR] [SP]
  • 05.40 Collection of illicit and unwanted SALW [EN] [FR]
  • 05.50 Destruction: Weapons [EN] [FR]
  • 05.60 Border controls and law enforcement cooperation [EN] [FR]

Useful resources:

  • Training manual on gender-responsive small arms control
  • ANNEX to the training manual on gender-responsive small arms control

For guidance on the control and management of ammunition, see the International Ammunition Technical Guidelines (IATG) and the UN SaferGuard Programme.

What is MOSAIC?

MOSAIC translates into practice the objectives of key global agreements aiming to prevent the illicit trade, destabilizing accumulation and misuse of small arms and light weapons.

These include:

  • the Programme of Action on the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons
  • the International Tracing Instrument
  • the Firearms Protocol supplementing the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime
  • the Arms Trade Treaty.

MOSAIC modules are based on good practices, codes of conduct and standard operating procedures that have been developed at (sub-)regional levels. They have been vetted by the very best technical experts from around the world.

MOSAIC also supports the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, including Goal 16 to promote peaceful, just and inclusive societies and its target 16.4 that includes a significant reduction in illicit arms flows.

Using MOSAIC is completely voluntary.

Who developed MOSAIC?

Governments often call upon the UN system to provide advice and support on issues related to small arms and light weapons control — including on legislative, programmatic and operational matters.

UN agencies decided that the best way to ensure that the United Nations as a whole could consistently deliver high-quality advice and support in response to such requests, was to develop international guidance on small arms and light weapons control, similar to the standards the UN developed in the areas of:

  • Mine action (International Mine Action Standards – IMAS
  • Disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (Integrated DDR Standards – IDDRS)
  • Ammunition (International Ammunition Technical Guidelines – IATG)

The compendium is the result of a decade of coordinated work within the UN system, involving 24 partner entities with expertise ranging from development and weapons management to gender and public health.
An external expert reference group of over 300 specialists, from NGOs to industry, completed the sturdy process of establishing each module.

Who can use MOSAIC?

MOSAIC can be used by any government or organization.

Properly basing small-arms control endeavours on MOSAIC modules, reduces the risk of weapons falling into the hands of criminals, armed groups, terrorists and others who would misuse them.

MOSAIC. Good practices for safer societies.

Download MOSAIC factsheet

MOSAIC Partners

  • Australia — Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade | Australian Crime Commission | Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
  • Benin — Benin Armed Forces
  • Canada — Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade | Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • Colombia — Ministry of Foreign Affairs | Department for Arms Control and Trade | National Committee on Illicit Traffic of Small Arms
  • Ecuador — Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Integration
  • Germany — Federal Ministry of Defence, Bundeswehr Verification Centre
  • Guatemala — Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Hungary — Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Iraq — Ministry of Interior
  • Ireland — Department of Foreign Affairs | Irish Aid | Garda Technical Bureau, Ballistics Section
  • Jamaica — Jamaica Police, Firearm Licensing Authority
  • Kenya — Kenya Police
  • Liberia — National Police Training Academy
  • Mexico — Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • New Zealand — Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade | New Zealand Police
  • Nigeria — Presidential Committee on Small Arms and Light Weapons
  • Norway — Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Papua New Guinea — Department of the Prime Minister
  • Romania — Romanian Police, Forensic Science Institute
  • Serbia — Ministry of Interior
  • Sierra Leone — National Commission on Small Arms
  • South Sudan — Bureau for Community Security and Small Arms Control, Ministry of Interior
  • Switzerland — Federal Department of Foreign Affairs | Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport
  • Trinidad and Tobago — Ministry of National Security
  • UK — London Metropolitan Police
  • National Association of Sporting Firearms and Ammunition Manufacturers, Italy (ANPAM)
  • Thierry Jacobs — Independent Technical Expert
  • Traceability Solutions