November 30, 2016
By Aaron Arnold, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
Before trashing the Iran deal — the agreement inked last fall, which limits Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief — the incoming Trump administration should consider how a policy of soft economic engagement with Tehran could provide Washington with strategic leverage and increased bargaining power in a post-Iran deal world.
Throughout his campaign, now President-elect Trump attacked the Iran deal, claiming that “it will go down in history as one of the worst deals ever negotiated.” The future of the deal now seems to be far less certain, as Trump fills key positions with outspoken critics of the agreement. Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-KS), Trump’s recent pick for CIA director, is well-known for his hardline stance on the deal, recently noting that it should be “rolled back.”
November 30, 2016
By Melissa Hathaway, Senior Advisor, Cyber Security Project
"Manufacturers, retailers and others selling services and products with embedded digital technology must be held legally accountable for the security flaws of their wares....A better approach is an Internet Underwriters Laboratory, akin to the product-testing and certification system used for electrical appliances. Such a system could help ensure that internet-connected devices meet a minimum level of security before they're released into the marketplace."
November 28, 2016
Foundation for Defense of Democracies
By Olli Heinonen, Senior Associate, Managing the Atom Project
While the U.S. administration maintains that Iran has thus far complied with the nuclear deal, the recent International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report indicates that for the second time, Iran has exceeded the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action’s (JCPOA) limit for its inventory of heavy water.
November 23, 2016
The Washington Post, PostEverything Blog
By Bruce Schneier, Research Fellow, Cyber Security Project; Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School
"Accountability is a major problem for U.S. elections. The candidates are the ones required to petition for recounts, and we throw the matter into the courts when we can't figure it out. This all happens after an election, and because the battle lines have already been drawn, the process is intensely political. Unlike many other countries, we don't have an independent body empowered to investigate these matters."
November 21, 2016
"...[E]ven if the impacts of a Trump slump in U.S. domestic climate action are manageable, the impact on global policy may not be. The concern here is not immediate support for new coal plants or the immediate risk of conflict; it is the way in which a weakening of international institutions might initiate a negative feedback loop played out over many years and decades."
World Affairs, issue 2, volume 179
By Mariana Budjeryn, Stanton Nuclear Security Postdoctoral Fellow, International Security Program/Project on Managing the Atom
"Ukraine's denuclearization had been a controversial issue even as it was negotiated, leaving bitter traces in the country's political and public discourse. As a student of political science in Kyiv in the mid-1990s, I remember being outraged by the sense of injustice: how could the states that rely on their own nuclear deterrents demand the nuclear disarmament of others? More so that one of these states, Russia, has never fully come to terms with Ukraine's independence. Since then, I came to research a doctoral dissertation on the denuclearization of post-Soviet successor states and, in the process, learned a great deal about Ukraine's nuclear disarmament that dispelled many of my preconceptions."
By Behnam Taebi, Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
New technology brings great benefits, but it can also create new and significant risks. When evaluating those risks in policymaking, there is a tendency to focus on social acceptance. By solely focusing on social acceptance, important ethical aspects of technological risk could be overlooked, particularly when evaluating technologies with transnational and intergenerational risks. The author examines the case of multinational nuclear waste repositories.
"Scientific Wealth in Middle East and North Africa: Productivity, Indigeneity, and Specialty in 1981–2013"
PLoS ONE, issue 11, volume 11
By Afreen Siddiqi, Visiting Scholar, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, Jonathan Stoppani, Laura Diaz Anadon, Associate, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy, Science, Technology, and Pubic Policy Program
Several developing countries seek to build knowledge-based economies by attempting to expand scientific research capabilities. Characterizing the state and direction of progress in this arena is challenging but important. In this article, the authors employ three metrics: a classical metric of productivity (publications per person), an adapted metric which we denote as Revealed Scientific Advantage (developed from work used to compare publications in scientific fields among countries) to characterize disciplinary specialty, and a new metric, scientific indigeneity (defined as the ratio of publications with domestic corresponding authors) to characterize the locus of scientific activity that also serves as a partial proxy for local absorptive capacity.
November 13, 2016
The National Interest
By Jessica Malekos Smith, Postdoctoral Fellow, Cyber Security Project
"Perfect selective attribution is the most well-balanced in accounting for social justice and security culture needs. The reason being is that it enables all cyber stakeholders with the freedom of choice in disclosing their true personal and/or organizational attributes to an intended recipient, and equally importantly, to what extent. And although each actor is endowed with the power of freedom of choice, every cyber action is also accompanied by the freedom of failure."
November 9, 2016
By David Eaves, Research Fellow, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program
"Across Washington, there are public servants who did not vote Republican who are returning to their jobs to serve the best they can. The current administration has been effective in issuing a call to arms to civic technologists to help government. Now, having created a critical mass of civic technologists in DC, can it hold to continue to have the influence and grow the capabilities a 21st century government needs? Maintaining this critical mass is a test that any effort to institutionalize change must clear."