MacArthur has announced grants totaling more than $1.8 million to advance work it supports in three aspects of international peace and security: the development of cooperative security methods; efforts to limit the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; and assisting in the development of science, technology, and security specialists.
The grants were made through the International Peace and Security area of the Foundation's Program on Global Security and Sustainability. Through this grantmaking the Foundation seeks to help generate the technical arguments and policy influence needed to reduce the global danger posed by weapons of mass destruction. It is work that has been given impetus by the threat of international terrorism.
"Progress in arms reduction and nonproliferation requires scientific and technical expertise, coupled with a broad and deep understanding of social, economic, and policy processes," said Jonathan F. Fanton, president of the Foundation. "This work requires new ways of thinking about security, developing frameworks that move beyond the traditional reference points of deterrence and confrontation. The MacArthur Foundation has provided support for such efforts for many years, first during the Cold War and now in its very complex aftermath."
One grant focuses on cooperative security, a means of implementing international cooperation to prevent violent conflict rather than responding to the aftermath of an attack. The Committee on International Security and Arms Control of the National Academy of Sciences has been awarded $600,000 over two years that will be used to bring together science, security, and technology specialists from the United States, Russia, China, and South Asia. The talks will focus on the control and limits of weapons of mass destruction and on new topics related to the challenges posed by terrorism. Over the course of the past ten years the Committee has been the source of seven major studies on central aspects of nuclear weapons proliferation.
As part of its support for efforts to limit the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the Foundation has awarded a grant of $325,000 to Harvard University and of $325,000 to the University of Sussex in the United Kingdom. The fund will support the Harvard-Sussex Program on Chemical and Biological Weapons and Arms Limitation. The program houses the world's largest public database on aspects of biological and chemical weapons, including work on efforts to limit their production and constrain their use. It provides information and research facilities to researchers, policy analysts, and government policymakers as well as training on chemical and biological weapons issues for scientists and researchers.
The Monterey Institute of International Studies has been awarded a grant of $550,000 over three years in support of a Scientist-in-Residence program and for policy research on verification on tactical nuclear weapons reductions. The Scientist-in-Residence will be engaged in policy research on nonproliferation with others at the Monterey Institute and will work with graduate students to expose them to scientific and technical analyses of international security issues. The policy analysis project will develop the foundation for a verification system that will allow for verifiable and legally binding limitations to tactical nuclear weapons. Such a system does not currently exist because past arms controls agreements focused on the numbers of nuclear missile launchers and not on the weapons themselves. Because tactical nuclear weapons are typically not attached to launchers, they are not regulated by arms control agreements.