How the World Disarmed: The History of Nuclear Abolition 2009-2025



Gareth Evans,

Date and Time

April 9, 2009 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM


Open to the public.

No RSVP required


Reuben W. Hills Conference Room

FSI Contact

Justin C. Liszanckie

Scott Sagan is a professor of political science and co-director of Stanford's Center for International Security and Cooperation. He is on sabbatical in 2008-09. Before joining the Stanford faculty, Sagan was a lecturer in the Department of Government at Harvard University and served as a special assistant to the director of the Organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon. He has also served as a consultant to the office of the Secretary of Defense and at the Sandia National Laboratory and the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Sagan is the author of Moving Targets: Nuclear Strategy and National Security (Princeton University Press, 1989), The Limits of Safety: Organizations, Accidents, and Nuclear Weapons(Princeton University Press, 1993), and with co-author Kenneth N. Waltz, The Spread of Nuclear Weapons: A Debate Renewed (W.W. Norton, 2002). He is the co-editor of Peter R. Lavoy, Scott D. Sagan, and James L. Wirtz, Planning the Unthinkable (Cornell University Press, 2000). Sagan was the recipient of Stanford University's 1996 Hoagland Prize for Undergraduate Teaching and the 1998 Dean's Award for Distinguished Teaching. As part of CISAC's mission of training the next generation of security specialists he and Stephen Stedman founded Stanford's Interschool Honors Program in International Security Studies in 2000.

His recent articles include "How to Keep the Bomb From Iran," in Foreign Affairs (September-October 2006); "The Madman Nuclear Alert: Secrecy, Signaling, and Safety in October 1969" co-written by Jeremi Suri and published in International Security in spring 2003; and "The Problem of Redundancy Problem: Will More Nuclear Security Forces Produce More Nuclear Security?" published in Risk Analysis in 2004. The first piece warns against "proliferation fatalism" and "deterrence optimism" to argue that the United States should work to prevent Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons by addressing the security concerns that are likely motivators for Iran's nuclear ambitions. The International Security piece looks into the events surrounding a secret nuclear alert ordered by President Nixon to determine how effective the alert was at achieving the president's goal of forcing negotiations for the end of the Vietnam War. It also questions many of the assumptions made about nuclear signaling and discusses the dangers of new nuclear powers using this technique. Sagan's article on redundancy in Risk Analysis won Columbia University's Institute for War and Peace Studies 2003 Best Paper in Political Violence prize. In this article, Sagan looks at how we should think about nuclear security and the emerging terrorist threat, specifically whether more nuclear facility security personnel increases our safety. His article, "Realism, Ethics, and Weapons of Mass Destruction" appears in Ethics and Weapons of Mass Destruction: Religious and Secular Perspectives, edited by Sohail Hashmi and Steven Lee. In addition to these works, Sagan is also finishing a collection of essays for a book tentatively entitled Inside Nuclear South Asia.

Gareth Evans has been since January 2000 President and Chief Executive of the Brussels-based International Crisis Group (Crisis Group), the independent global non-governmental organisation with nearly 140 full-time staff on five continents which works, through field-based analysis and high-level policy advocacy, to prevent and resolve deadly conflict. Born in 1944, he went to Melbourne High School, and holds first class honours degrees in Law from Melbourne University (BA, LLB (Hons)) and in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford University (MA). Evans was one of Australia's longest serving Foreign Ministers, best known internationally for his roles in developing the UN peace plan for Cambodia, bringing to a conclusion the international Chemical Weapons Convention, founding the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum and ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), and initiating the Canberra Commission on the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

He was Australian Humanist of the Year in 1990, won the ANZAC Peace Prize in 1994 for his work on Cambodia, was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 2001, and was awarded Honorary Doctorates of Laws by Melbourne University in 2002 and Carleton University in 2005. In 2000-2001 he was co-chair, with Mohamed Sahnoun, of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS), appointed by the Government of Canada, which published its report, The Responsibility to Protect, in December 2001. He was a member of the of the UN Secretary General's High Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change, whose report A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility was published in December 2004; the Commission on Weapons of Mass Destruction sponsored by Sweden and chaired by Hans Blix which reported in June 2006;  the International Task Force on Global Public Goods, sponsored by Sweden and France and chaired by Ernesto Zedillo, which reported in September 2006, and the Independent Commission on the Role of the IAEA to 2020 and Beyond, which reported in May 2008. In June 2008 he was appointed to co-chair (with former Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi) the International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament. He had previously served as a member of the Carnegie Commission on Preventing Deadly Conflict, co-chaired by Cyrus Vance and David Hamburg (1994-97), and is currently a member of the UN Secretary-General's Advisory Committee on Genocide. 

Michael May is Professor Emeritus (Research) in the Stanford University School of Engineering and a senior fellow with the Institute for International Studies at Stanford University. He is the former co-director of Stanford University's Center for International Security and Cooperation, having served seven years in that capacity through January 2000. May is a director emeritus of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, where he worked from 1952 to 1988, with some brief periods away from the Laboratory. While there, he held a variety of research and development positions, serving as director of the Laboratory from 1965 to 1971. May was a technical adviser to the Threshold Test Ban Treaty negotiating team; a member of the U.S. delegation to the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks; and at various times has been a member of the Defense Science Board, the General Advisory Committee to the AEC, the Secretary of Energy Advisory Board, the RAND Corporation Board of Trustees, and the Committee on International Security and Arms Control of the National Academy of Sciences. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Pacific Council on International Policy, and a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. May received the Distinguished Public Service and Distinguished Civilian Service Medals from the Department of Defense, and the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award from the Atomic Energy Commission, as well as other awards. His current research interests are in the area of nuclear and terrorism, energy, security and environment, and the relation of nuclear weapons and foreign policy. 

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