POSSE Roundtable and Panel at ISA Annual Convention

Event Details

Will Foster
Center for International Strategy, Technology, and Policy (CISTP)
Sam Nunn School of International Affairs
Georgia Institute of Technology
cell: 520-440-0807


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Full Summary: The Program On Strategic Stability Evaluation (POSSE) Roundtable and Panel have been accepted at the International Studies Association (ISA) Convention in April 2013.

The Program On Strategic Stability Evaluation (POSSE) Roundtable and Panel have been accepted at the International Studies Association (ISA) Convention in April 2013. 
Roundtable and Panel descriptions:

Creation and Diffusion of Nuclear Knowledge: Contrasting National Experiences amid Changing Strategic Landscapes and Domains Roundtable (Thursday, April 4,  10:30 AM)


  • Stulberg, Adam (Chair)
  • Potter, William (Chair)
  • Wolfstahl, Jon (Discussant)
  • Lewis, Jeffrey (Discussant)
  • Fetisova, Julia (Roundtable Participant)
  • Harrington de Santana, Anne (Roundtable Participant)
  • Tasleem, Sadia (Roundtable Participant)
  • Wu, Riqiang (Roundtable Participant)
  • Liu, Huaping (Roundtable Participant)

Debate rages over nuclear disarmament across the globe. Yet, the criteria for assessing processes and stable end-points remain contested among nuclear weapons states. We lack intellectual moorings to explicate new dilemmas for strategic stability beyond traditional benchmarks that are the object of different national interpretations and reassessment. This roundtable examines not only critical distinctions among American, Chinese, Pakistani, and Russian approaches to strategic stability but how foundational tenets of nuclear deterrence and doctrine diffuse across various regional contexts and policy domains. How does nuclear knowledge spread to inform respective postures, modernization, and reductions programs? Can alternative frameworks of stability rooted in mutual and divided responsibilities for cooperative security be applied to asymmetric nuclear strategies? Are there new formulations suggestive of how can states be driven to take risks on deep reductions rather than on nuclear break-out? How are concepts such as “no first use,” “reassurance” "credibility," and “stability” absorbed beyond the U.S.-Soviet context? Alternatively, can common U.S. and Soviet understandings of nuclear deterrence inform U.S.-PRC strategic interaction in space? Finally, what are the implications of nuclear learning, spread of new concepts of stability, and application of cross-domain deterrence for advancing practical steps towards deep nuclear reductions?

Continuity and Change in Nuclear Diplomacy and Approaches to Strategic Stability in the Post-Cold War Era  Panel (Thursday, April 4, 4:00 PM)

  • Stulberg, Adam (Chair)
  • Knopf, Jeffrey (Discussant)\


The call for nuclear disarmament stirs debate over strategic stability. Some argue that new political realities and normative imperatives necessitate uprooting long-established concepts. Others champion nuclear deterrence even at low numbers for dissuading preemption and limiting the scope of armed conflict among multiple possessor states with asymmetric arsenals. But often overlooked is how readily Cold War nuclear strategies and practices travel across time, regional contexts and national strategic communities. Can the epistemic communities and reserve of nuclear knowledge that evolved to build confidence between the U.S. and Soviet Union transfer to future strategic interaction between Washington and Beijing? Which conditions were propitious for the hosting of nuclear weapons on foreign soil or efficacy of security guarantees, and what are the implications for future nuclear force structure and deployments? How sticky are national concepts of deterrence? Do new regional, domestic, and technological conditions confronting Russia and India augur well for change or continuity in the coherence and practice of respective nuclear strategies? This panel probes these issues applying diverse theoretical frameworks, alternative research methods, and non-U.S. cases and perspectives that together illuminate "new thinking" for understanding how nuclear strategies, deployments, and concepts of stability diffuse across the contemporary international system.

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In Campus Calendar

Center for International Strategy, Technology, and Policy (CISTP), Program on Strategic Stability Evaluation (POSSE)

Invited Audience
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Adam Stulberg, international Studies Association, ISA, Jeffrey Knopf, Nuclear Strategic Stability
  • Created By: Debbie Mobley
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Oct 4, 2012 - 7:14am
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 10:00pm