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Matthew Bunn

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

 

 

By Date

 

2014 (continued)

April 4, 2014

"A Worst Practices Guide to Insider Threats: Lessons from Past Mistakes"

Occasional Paper

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom and Scott Sagan, Former Research Fellow, International Security Program, 1981-1982; Editorial Board Member, Quarterly Journal: International Security

Insider threats are perhaps the most serious challenges that nuclear security systems face. Insiders perpetrate a large fraction of thefts from heavily guarded non-nuclear facilities as well, yet organizations often find it difficult to understand and protect against insider threats. Why is this the case? Part of the answer is that there are deep organizational and cognitive biases that lead managers to downplay the threats insiders pose to their nuclear facilities and operations. But another part of the answer is that those managing nuclear security often have limited information about incidents that have happened in other countries or in other industries, and the lessons that might be learned from them.

 

 

IAEA

March 25, 2014

"Progress at The Hague Nuclear Security Summit"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

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

"So what did the nuclear security summit in The Hague accomplish?  A good deal.  Despite being overshadowed by the crisis in Ukraine and the associated crush of side meetings, the summit in The Hague once again served as a forcing event to cut through bureaucracy and get important decisions made.  Just as having friends over for dinner motivates you to clean up your house, going to a major global summit motivates leaders to push their bureaucracies to give them something worthwhile to talk about when they get there."

 

 

March 24, 2014

"Eliminating Potential Bomb Material from Japan’s Fast Critical Assembly"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

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

"Today, the United States and Japan announced that Japan would eliminate all the plutonium and highly-enriched uranium at its Fast Critical Assembly (FCA) at Tokai-mura.  This is a tremendous step forward for nuclear security; for terrorists, this would be some of the best material that exists in any non-nuclear-weapon state.  The material includes 331 kilograms of plutonium, most of it weapons-grade, and 214.5 kilograms of weapons-grade HEU.  (The FCA also includes over a ton of material just at the 20 percent U-235 mark that defines HEU.)   The weapons-grade HEU is enough for four simple terrorist “gun-type” bombs or a larger number of trickier-to-build implosion bombs.  The plutonium amounts to more than 40 bombs worth of material..."

 

 

March 24, 2014

Matthew Bunn Discusses 2014 Nuclear Security Summit on PBS NewsHour

News

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

Harvard Kennedy School Professor of Practice Matthew Bunn was interviewed on PBS NewsHour about the 2014 Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague and Japan’s announcement at the Summit that it will hand over to the United States its supplies of weapons-grade plutonium and highly enriched uranium on Monday, March 24, 2014.

 

 

March 18, 2014

Advancing Nuclear Security: Evaluating Progress and Setting New Goals

Report

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Martin B. Malin, Executive Director, 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

In the lead-up to the nuclear security summit, Advancing Nuclear Security: Evaluating Progress and Setting New Goals outlines what was accomplished in a four-year effort launched in 2009 to secure nuclear material around the globe—and what remains to be done. The effort made significant progress, but some weapons-usable nuclear materials still remain “dangerously vulnerable." The authors highlight the continuing danger of nuclear and radiological terrorism and call for urgent action.

 

 

March 17, 2014

"Nuclear Security is the Foundation for the Three Pillars of the Nonproliferation Treaty"

Op-Ed, Nuclear Security Matters

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

"Many of the international diplomats preparing for the nuclear security summit in The Hague are more used to discussing disarmament, nonproliferation, and peaceful uses of nuclear energy – known as the “three pillars” of the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), the foundation of the global nonproliferation regime – than they are to discussing the security measures for protecting nuclear weapons, materials, or facilities.  Some have argued that the summit should turn from an exclusive focus on nuclear security to discuss next steps on the three pillars."

 

 

March 2014

Threat Perceptions and Drivers of Change in Nuclear Security Around the World: Results of a Survey

Report

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

Leaders at the 2010 nuclear security summit agreed on the goal of securing all vulnerable nuclear material in four years, but the factors that drive and/or constrain nuclear security changes are not well understood. Matthew Bunn and Eben Harrell surveyed nuclear security professionals in countries with nuclear weapons, HEU, or separated plutonium to explore this issue. This paper describes the survey, its results, and implications for strengthening global nuclear security.

 

 

NTI

February 11, 2014

"What Types of Nuclear Material Require What Levels of Security?"

Presentation

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

In this presentation to an Institute for Nuclear Materiials Management workshop on risk-informing security, Matthew Bunn proposes a new approach to judging which materials would be easiest or more difficult for terrorists to use in a nuclear bomb, and hence which materials require more or less security.

 

 

January 31, 2014

"Plutonium Disposition: What are We Trying to Accomplish?"

Presentation

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

HKS Professor of Practice Matthew Bunn presented this presentation at the Plutonium Disposition Alternatives Workshop for the Union of Concerned Scientists in Washington, DC on January 30-31, 2014.

 

2013

Dec 31, 2013

"A Nuclear Blind Alley for the U.S."

Op-Ed, Los Angeles Times

By Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom and Fred McGoldrick, Former Associate, Project on Managing the Atom, May 2011–June 2013

The world is rightly worried about Iran's uranium enrichment program. Iran claims this technology is for producing fuel for nuclear power plants, but it could be quickly shifted to making nuclear bomb material.

 

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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.