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Nickolas Roth

Mailing address

One Brattle Square 523
523 One Brattle Square
79 John F. Kennedy Street - Mailbox 134
Cambridge, MA, 02138

Nickolas Roth

Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

Contact:
Telephone: 617-496-4680
Fax: 617-496-0606
Email: nickolas_roth@hks.harvard.edu

 

Experience

Nickolas Roth is a Research Associate at the Project on Managing the Atom in the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard Kennedy School. His research focuses on nuclear nonproliferation, nuclear security, and the nuclear policy-making process. Before coming to Harvard, he spent a decade in the NGO world working on nuclear policy. He served as a policy analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists, where he wrote extensively about long-term U.S. plans to modernize the U.S. nuclear stockpile and its supporting industrial infrastructure. Mr. Roth also served as the Program Director for the Alliance for Nuclear Accountability, where he helped create legislation to improve accountability and project management within the Department of Energy.

Mr. Roth’s work has appeared in, or been cited by, media outlets around the world, including the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Asahi Shimbun, Boston Globe, and Newsweek. Additionally, he has given presentations at the United Nations, nuclear non-Proliferation preparatory committee meetings, numerous universities around the country, and on C-Span.

Mr. Roth has a B.A. in History from American University and a Masters of Public Policy from the University of Maryland. While at Maryland, he served as a research assistant for the Center for International and Security Studies’ Nuclear Materials Accounting Project.

 

 

By Date

 

2015

May 20, 2015

"Don't Weaken Our Defenses Against Nuclear Smuggling"

Op-Ed, The Hill

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, William H. Tobey, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

William H. TobeyMatthew Bunn, and Nickolas Roth oppose proposed legislation that would prohibit funding for fixed radiation detectors to catch nuclear smugglers. They argue for a balanced program to defeat nuclear smuggling that includes strong security, effective law enforcement and intelligence work, and interdiction efforts and border controls backed by both fixed and mobile radiation detectors.

 

 

January 22, 2015

"Strengthening International Nuclear Security Cooperation"

Policy Brief

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

Last fall, experts from around the world gathered to identify ways to strengthen nuclear security cooperation between the United States and Russia and the United States and China. In this Policy Brief, Nickolas Roth summarizes that conversation and provides policy recommendations based on it.

 

 

January 12, 2015

"What Can the Secret Service Teach Us About Nuclear Security?"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

"One of the more notable storylines throughout 2014 was the continued failures of the U.S. Secret Service. There were three striking high profile lapses in the Secret Service’s ability to protect President Obama: one where a man jumped over the White House fence, running through the front door of the White House and throughout its main floor; another where an armed man with an arrest record was able to ride on the same elevator as the President; and another where a man posing as a Member of Congress was able  to sneak into a secured area where the President was speaking. Towards the end of the year, problems within the Secret Service became a hotly debated political football, resulting in the resignation of the Service’s director..."

 

2014

NNSA

December 5, 2014

"The United States Should Chew Gum and Walk on Nuclear Security"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

"Last weekend, the New York Times published a debate on whether, as a result of tension over Ukraine, the United States should cut off nuclear security cooperation with Russia. As the Times reported before the debate, Russia may be bringing nearly all of this cooperation to an end–but there are some in the United States saying the U.S. government should act to end it whether or not Russia is willing to continue. Given the deteriorating relationship between the two countries, this issue should be debated now. We are continuing the debate on Nuclear Security Matters and welcome readers to send us their thoughts..."

 

 

NNSA

December 5, 2014

"Congress Reaffirms Support for Preventing Theft of Russian Nuclear Material"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

"Advocates of preventing nuclear terrorism received an early holiday present. Earlier in the year, two of the four Congressional committees most directly responsible for nuclear security policy had included language in bills that would have damaged the ability to engage in such cooperation.  But Congress has taken responsible action in supporting continued work on nuclear security in the combined House-Senate version of the FY2015 National Defense Authorization Act..."

 

 

November 4, 2014

"Strengthening International Cooperation on Nuclear Materials Security"

Policy Memo

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

The Stanley Foundation convened a group of experts and policymakers from the United States and abroad to address these issues October 15–17, 2014, at its 55th annual Strategy for Peace Conference. The group discussed overcoming challenges to nuclear security cooperation faced by the United States, Russia, and China, and next steps in ensuring that countries put in place effective and sustainable nuclear security measures with strong security cultures. This policy memo offers highlights of the discussion and recommendations of roundtable participants.

 

 

October 21, 2014

"A Response to Critics of U.S.-Russian Nuclear Security Cooperation"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

"Most U.S. policymakers support critical U.S. investments in improving security to prevent the theft of nuclear weapons and weapons usable material in Russia. A few, however, are starting to raise doubts about whether this cooperation is a good idea. Skeptics argue that, because of Russia’s incursion into Ukraine, the federal government needs to make a stronger case for nuclear security cooperation with Russia. They argue that the U.S. case needs to address issues like the cost of nuclear security programs, the fungibility of money given to Russia for security upgrades, and the marginal benefit of nuclear security spending in Russia. The problem with these concerns is that they do not acknowledge the purpose of nuclear security cooperation: reducing the threat of nuclear terrorism..."

 

 

NNSA

August 19, 2014

"26 Senators Call for Increasing Nuclear Security Funding"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

By Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

"Yesterday, Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) released a letter signed by 26 senators asking the Obama Administration to increase funding for nonproliferation and nuclear security programs. In the letter, which was sent last week to Office of Management and Budget Director Shaun Donovan, the bipartisan group of senators raised concern regarding cuts to nuclear security programs over the past several years and requested that the Obama administration “seek increased funding for vital nuclear material security and nonproliferation programs” in its upcoming fiscal year (FY) 2016 budget request, expected to be released early in 2015.

 

 

NNSA

August 12, 2014

"The Russian Tie We Can't Cut"

Op-Ed, The New York Times

By William H. Tobey, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom and Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

In this op-ed for the International New York Times, William H. Tobey, Matthew Bunn, and Nickolas Roth make the case for continuing nuclear security cooperation with Russia and continuing to fund international nuclear security efforts.

 

 

July 30, 2014

Cutting Too Deep: The Obama Administration’s Proposals for Nuclear Security Spending Reductions

Report

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Nickolas Roth, Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom and William H. Tobey, Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

The Obama administration has proposed steep cuts in funding for improving security for dangerous nuclear materials. If approved, they would slow progress toward preventing the essential ingredients of nuclear bombs from falling into terrorist hands. Cutting too Deep reviews funding trends over the past four years and describes how the proposed cuts would delay nuclear and radiological material removal, research reactor conversion, and other work.

 

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