Belfer Center Home > Experts > Matthew Bunn

« Back to list of experts

Matthew Bunn

Mailing address

Littauer 339C
Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
79 John F. Kennedy Street, Mailbox 53
Cambridge, MA, 02138

Downloadable CV

Matthew Bunn

Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

Member of the Board

Contact:
Telephone: (617) 495-9916
Fax: 617-495-8963
Email: matthew_bunn@harvard.edu

 

Experience

Matthew Bunn is a Professor of Practice at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.  His research interests include nuclear theft and terrorism; nuclear proliferation and measures to control it; the future of nuclear energy and its fuel cycle; and policies to promote innovation in energy technologies.

Before joining the Kennedy School in January 1997, he served for three years as an adviser to the Office of Science and Technology Policy, where he played a major role in U.S. policies related to the control and disposition of weapons-usable nuclear materials in the United States and the former Soviet Union, and directed a secret study for President Clinton on security for nuclear materials in Russia.  Previously, Bunn was at the National Academy of Sciences, where he directed the two-volume study Management and Disposition of Excess Weapons Plutonium.  He is the winner of the American Physical Society's Joseph A. Burton Forum Award for "outstanding contributions in helping to formulate policies to decrease the risks of theft of nuclear weapons and nuclear materials," and the Federation of American Scientists' Hans Bethe Award for "science in service to a more secure world," and is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.   He is a member of the Boards of Directors of the Arms Control Association and the Partnership for Global Security.

Bunn is the author or co-author of more than 20 books and book-length technical reports (most recently including Transforming U.S. Energy Innovation), and over a hundred articles in publications ranging from Science and Nuclear Technology to Foreign Policy and The Washington Post. He appears regularly on television and radio.

Bunn holds a doctorate in technology, management, and policy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is married to Jennifer Weeks; they have two daughters.

 

 

By Date

 

2014

September 26, 2014

"Nuclear Security in Russia – and Current State of Cooperation"

Presentation

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

On September 26, 2014, Matthew Bunn presented "Nuclear Security in Russia – and Current State of Cooperation" at the Harvard Workshop on Nuclear Security at the U.S. Institute for Peace.

 

 

July 2014

Transforming U.S. Energy Innovation

Book

By Laura Diaz Anadon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-PI, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Professor of Technology and Public Policy; Professor of Physics, Harvard; Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-Principal Investigator, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group

How much should the U.S. government invest on energy R&D, and where should those investments be focused? How can the government work with the private sector to accelerate energy innovation? This book addresses these and other important questions to meet the energy challenge with new analytical methods and data.

 

 

NNSA

August 12, 2014

"The Russian Tie We Can't Cut"

Op-Ed, 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.

 

 

August 7, 2014

"Arms control: Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater"

Op-Ed, The Hill

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

"The Obama administration has released a report formally charging Russia with violating the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. This comes in the midst of a drumbeat of negative Russia news, from arming rebels in Ukraine and annexing Crimea to propping up the brutal dictatorship in Syria and hosting Edward Snowden. To some, the INF issue will be seen as more evidence that it’s impossible to deal with Vladimir Putin’s Russia."

 

 

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.

 

 

NNSA

July 2014

Innovating Verification: New Tools & New Actors to Reduce Nuclear Risks

Report

By Verifying Baseline Declarations of Nuclear Warheads and Materials Working Group, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom and John Carlson, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom

Part of NTI's Innovating Verification reports series, Verifying Baseline Declarations of Nuclear Warheads and Materials analyzes how baseline declarations can contribute to near- and long-term arms control and non-proliferation goals and how to verify them without compromising sensitive information.

 

 

July 14, 2014

Matthew Bunn Interviewed in Tehran Times

News

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

Amidst intense negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 countries in Vienna on Iran's nuclear program, Professor Matthew Bunn was interviewed for a July 14 article in the Tehran Times about what a comprehensive agreement would look like and how the two sides of the dispute should approach the talks to obtain significant and substantive results.

 

 

Jul 11, 2014

"ISIS Seizes Nuclear Material—but That’s Not the Reason to Worry"

Op-Ed, The National Interest

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

"Like the Taliban’s Afghanistan before 9/11, the Islamic State may become a safe haven for people from other groups and countries to train and plot complex attacks."

 

 

June 11, 2014

"Ensuring a Nuclear Nightmare Never Happens"

Op-Ed, The National Interest

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

Speaking at West Point last month, President Obama warned that “if nuclear materials are not secure, that poses a danger to American citizens.” Contrarily, recently proposed budget cuts could hamper work being done to ensure nuclear material never falls into the wrong hands. In his National Interest op-ed, Matthew Bunn makes the case that preventing nuclear danger should remain a top priority for Congress.

 

 

April 15, 2014

"What Kind of Material Needs What Level of Security?"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom

"In August of 2002, the United States – assisted by a gift from the Nuclear Threat Initiative, when it turned out no U.S. agency had money that was not blocked from doing what was needed – helped airlift 48 kilograms of 80% enriched highly enriched uranium out of the Vinca nuclear research institute in Serbia.  A force of 1,200 armed troops guarded the shipment as it moved from the lab to the airport.  Under international rules, this was dangerous “Category I” material requiring the highest level of security. But under Department of Energy (DOE) rules for categorizing nuclear material, if the same material had been at a DOE site, it would have been considered “Category III” material requiring hardly any security."

 

SUBSCRIBE

Receive email updates on the most pressing topics in science and int'l affairs.

Managing the Atom

The Project on Managing the Atom (MTA) conducts and disseminates policy-relevant research on nuclear weapons, nuclear energy, and nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.

Events Calendar

We host a busy schedule of events throughout the fall, winter and spring. Past guests include: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, former Vice President Al Gore, and former Russian President Mikhail Gorbachev.