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Commentary

Never let a good crisis go to waste! The impact of great power conflict on the nuclear non-proliferation regime and what to do about it

In advance of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) 2026 Review Conference, ELN Policy and Research Director Oliver Meier argues that Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine has thrown the nuclear non-proliferation regime into crisis. Despite this, opportunities remain to revitalise multilateral frameworks. If N5 states are willing to compartmentalise nuclear arms control, and if the existing international organisations that govern arms nuclear control are better leveraged to build on past achievements, progress on mitigating nuclear risks can still be made.

18 July 2024 | Oliver Meier
Policy brief

The challenge of Russian dual-capable missiles

In a new policy brief, ELN Senior Associate Fellows Simon Lunn and Nicholas Williams discuss how Russia’s superior quantities of dual-capable medium and short-range missiles affect the credibility of NATO’s nuclear posture. It also highlights how NATO’s expansion, the need to engage with more Alliance members, and any potential American withdrawal from Euro-Atlantic security architecture could affect NATO’s capacity for defence, as well as the role of deterrence and assurances in this nexus. 

17 July 2024 | Simon Lunn and Nicholas Williams
Policy brief

NATO’s revival of collective defence and the challenge of national commitments

As leaders gather in Washington for a three day summit to mark NATO’s 75th anniversary, ELN Senior Associate Fellows Nicholas Williams and Simon Lunn analyse the re-emergence of collective defence as a priority within the alliance, and what it means for national governments. The paper argues that NATO’s regional plans should be the subject of parliamentary scrutiny by individual national parliaments to ensure that national commitments to NATO are consistent with the resources and political aims of their respective countries.

9 July 2024 | Nicholas Williams and Simon Lunn
Commentary

The fast and the deadly: When Artificial Intelligence meets Weapons of Mass Destruction

Ahead of the German Federal Foreign Office’s Artificial Intelligence and Weapons of Mass Destruction Conference 2024, the ELN’s Policy and Research Director, Oliver Meier, argues that governments should build guardrails around the integration of AI in the WMD sphere, and slow down the incorporation of AI into research, development, production, and planning for nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons.

27 June 2024 | Oliver Meier
Commentary

How would humans react to nuclear catastrophe?

Most analyses of the effects of nuclear war focus on the impacts in terms of casualties and climate shocks. But there would be many second-order and third-order effects on political, social, and economic systems. Sir Adam Thomson and Paul Ingram write that it is imperative to avoid a nuclear war. If all such efforts fail, we need to understand what it would mean for global civilisation and what we could start to do to prepare.

19 June 2024 | Adam Thomson and Paul Ingram
Commentary

Unstable systems: Why geoengineering will solve neither climate change nor climate geopolitics

As more attention is paid to geoengineering technologies that claim to mitigate the existential risks posed by climate change, Jakob Gomolka, from our New European Voices on Existential Risk (NEVER) network, argues that policymakers needs to understand the geopolitical implications of these technologies, let alone their climatic side-effects, and calls for more alignment in the international governance of geoengineering technologies.

6 June 2024 | Jakob Gomolka