NSSC Fellow Jake Tibbetts is the winner of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ 2020 Leonard M. Rieser Award

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Jake Tibbetts, a graduate student at UC Berkeley, is the recipient of the prestigious Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ 2020 Leonard M. Rieser Award. Tibbetts received this award for his article “Keeping classified information secret in a world of quantum computing,” published in the Bulletin on February 11, 2020.  The article was selected from the Bulletin’s “Voices of Tomorrow” column, which features the writing of rising experts in topics including nuclear risk and disruptive technologies. 

Tibbetts is currently pursuing a Master’s degree at UC Berkeley, where he is studying electrical engineering and computer science. He is a fellow at the NNSA-supported Nuclear Science and Security Consortium, and has previously worked as a research assistant at the Center for Global Security Research at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. During his time at UC Berkeley, Tibbetts has made contributions to the Nuclear Policy Working Group and the Project on Nuclear Gaming. In the latter, he was involved in the creation of “SIGNAL,” an online three-player experimental wargame in which three countries, some armed with nuclear weapons, attempt to achieve national goals through diplomatic and military means. Tibbetts received undergraduate degrees from UC Berkeley in EECS and Global Studies in May 2020.

From the Bulletin: “In his piece, Jake Tibbetts accomplished the kind of deep, thoughtful, and well-crafted journalism that is the Bulletin’s hallmark,” Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists editor in chief John Mecklin said. “Quantum computing is a complex field; many articles about it are full of strange exaggerations and tangled prose. Tibbetts’ piece, on the other hand, is an exemplar of clarity and precision and genuinely worthy of the Rieser Award.” 

The Rieser Award is the capstone of the Bulletin’s Next Generation Program, created to ensure that new voices, steeped in science and public policy, have a trusted platform from which to address existential challenges. It is named for physicist Leonard M. Rieser (1922-1998), board chair at the Bulletin from 1984 until his death in 1998.”

Congratulations Jake!

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Jasmina Vujic: The first female chair of a nuclear engineering department

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NSSC Director Dr. Jasmina Vujic has been honored as part of the UC Berkeley College of Engineering’s celebration of 150 years of women in engineering.

“Jasmina Vujic was the first woman to join UC Berkeley’s nuclear engineering faculty in 1992, and in 2005 became the first female chair of a nuclear engineering department in the nation. She is renowned as a top researcher in the field of nuclear energy systems, numerical methods and biomedical applications of radiation. She is also the principal investigator and founding director of the Nuclear Science and Security Consortium. The $50M+ multi-institution initiative aims to train the next generation of nuclear scientists and engineers, as well as engage academic communities in collaborative research and development with national laboratories in support of the nation’s nonproliferation mission.” Read the full article here.

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NSSC joins NPWG in hosting talk with Dr. Frank Gavin on American Grand Strategy

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RSVP to receive meeting info HERE.

The world first confronted the power of nuclear weapons when the United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945. The global threat of these weapons deepened in the following decades as more advanced weapons, aggressive strategies, and new nuclear powers emerged. Ever since, countless books, reports, and articles—and even a new field of academic inquiry called “security studies”—have tried to explain the so-called nuclear revolution.

Francis J. Gavin argues that scholarly and popular understanding of many key issues about nuclear weapons is incomplete at best and wrong at worst. Among these important, misunderstood issues are: how nuclear deterrence works; whether nuclear coercion is effective; how and why the United States chose its nuclear strategies; why countries develop their own nuclear weapons or choose not to do so; and, most fundamentally, whether nuclear weapons make the world safer or more dangerous. These and similar questions still matter because nuclear danger is returning as a genuine threat. Emerging technologies and shifting great-power rivalries seem to herald a new type of cold war just three decades after the end of the U.S.-Soviet conflict that was characterized by periodic prospects of global Armageddon. Nuclear Weapons and American Grand Strategy helps policymakers wrestle with the latest challenges. Written in a clear, accessible, and jargon-free manner, the book also offers insights for students, scholars, and others interested in both the history and future of nuclear danger.

Francis J. Gavin is the Giovanni Agnelli Distinguished Professor and the inaugural director of the Henry A. Kissinger Center for Global Affairs at SAIS-Johns Hopkins University. In 2013, Gavin was appointed the first Frank Stanton Chair in Nuclear Security Policy Studies and Professor of Political Science at MIT. Before joining MIT, he was the Tom Slick Professor of International Affairs and the Director of the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law at the University of Texas. Gavin is the Chairman of the Board of Editors of the Texas National Security Review. His writings include Gold, Dollars, and Power: The Politics of International Monetary Relations, 1958-1971 and Nuclear Statecraft: History and Strategy in America’s Atomic Age. His latest book, Nuclear Weapons and American Grand Strategy, was published by Brookings Institution Press in 2020.

If you have any issues accessing the Zoom meeting, or do not receive a Zoom link after RSVPing, please send us a message through the contact form!

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