Ivanka Barzashka is a CISAC affiliate whose research focuses on how missile defense technology affects the likelihood of nuclear conflict in the changing strategic environment and how to mitigate the negative consequences of potentially disruptive technological change. She is concurrently a researcher at the Department of War Studies of King’s College London where she integrates quantitative models with qualitative analysis to examine the technical and political factors that influence strategic and regional stability. As a visiting scholar at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Barzashka examined options for Bulgarian active participation in NATO’s missile defense system, for which she did fieldwork at NATO’s interoperability (CWIX) exercises at the Joint Forces Training Center in Poland. She also assessed technical options for missile defense cooperation between NATO and Russia in collaboration with American, European and Russian scientists. Barzashka continued that project at the Centre for Science and Security Studies at King’s College London, where she developed a simple physics-based model for assessing missile defense effectiveness for policy applications.
Previously, Barzashka managed the Federation of American Scientists’ interdisciplinary assessment of Iran’s nuclear capability, specializing in gas centrifuge technology, and developed technically-grounded policy proposals on how to deal with the Iranian nuclear threat. Her work has been cited by major news outlets including Reuters, The Associated Press and The Washington Post. She has briefed various government agencies including the U.S. State Department and Department of Defense. She holds a B.S. in physics from Roanoke College and an M.A. in science and security (with distinction) from King's College London, where she is currently pursuing a doctorate in war studies research.