Join us for Arms Control Idol! The live, online grand final will be held on Tuesday, 15 September at 3.00pm-4.30pm BST.

The global arms control regime is in peril. With the end of the INF Treaty, allegations of Russian cheating on various agreements, and US plans to withdraw from the Open Skies Treaty, arms control as we know it is in jeopardy. New technologies, such as cyber and artificial intelligence, also challenge historical approaches to arms control as rooted in “strategic stability”. Bonnie Jenkins recently called for “imaginative thinking” for the future of arms control, so we hope to jump start that conversation.

Combating these challenges will require innovation, audacity, and big ideas. To kick things off, the Centre for Science and Security Studies is hosting its inaugural Arms Control Idol – and you’re invited!

Inspired by Policy Idol, an annual competition hosted by the Policy Institute at King’s College London, the competition will see next-generation leaders pitch their cutting-edge policy ideas for the future of arms control to a panel of acclaimed expert judges.

The event is open to all, but tickets are limited so be sure to get yours soon!

Audience members will be sent joining instructions for this Zoom session closer to the date.The finals will be moderated by Dr Heather Williams. She will be joined by five expert judges including Lieutenant. General (Ret.) Evgeny Buzhinsky, PhD, Ambassador Marjolijn van Deelen, Dr. Renata Dwan, Ambassador Dr. Bonnie Jenkins and Professor Li Bin.

About the expert judges
Lieutenant General (Retired) Evgeny Buzhinsky, PhD was Head of the International Treaties Department of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation from 2002-2009. In the Armed Services since 1968, he retired from military service in November 2009.

He served in different positions in the General Staff of the Soviet and Russian Armed Forces, was an assistant military attaché in Cyprus and Turkey, and held various positions in the International Treaties Department of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. In 2002, he was appointed Head of the International Treaties Department. In 2003, was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant General.

From 1999 to 2009, he was deputy head of Russian delegations at negotiations on Conventional Forces in Europe and Strategic Arms Reduction Talks. Since 2010, he is Senior Vice-President, then Chairman of the Executive Board of the Russian Center for Policy Studies ( PIR Center). Since 2017, he is Vice-President of the Russian International Affairs Counsel (RIAC).

Ambassador Marjolijn van Deelen will assume the position of EU Special Envoy for Non-proliferation and Disarmament on 1 September 2020. Until recently, she headed the Non-proliferation, Disarmament and Nuclear Affairs Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. Her responsibilities include all weapons of mass destruction-related Dutch foreign policy. In February 2019, she was appointed Dutch Ambassador for the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). She is designated Vice-President of the next NPT review conference chairing the main committee on peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

Ambassador Van Deelen previously served as head of the Europe Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, responsible for bilateral relations with over 20 countries. She was Deputy Permanent Representative to the Mission of the Netherlands to the UN Organizations in Vienna from 2009 to 2013 where her focus was on International Atomic Energy Agency non-proliferation and peaceful uses as well as the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty.

She was posted at the Netherlands Embassy in Bucharest as Head of Economic and Trade Affairs. In the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, she held functions in the Middle East department, the UN department and in Environmental issues. She also served in Costa Rica with accreditation to Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. She entered the Dutch Foreign Service in 1994.

Ms. Van Deelen holds a Masters in Geophysics from the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands, as well as a BA in Economics from the American University in Washington DC. She speaks Dutch, English, French, German and Spanish.

Dr. Renata Dwan joined the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research after many years working on peace and security issues at the United Nations, most recently as Chief of Policy and Best Practices in the Departments of Peacekeeping Operations and Field Support. She led the team to implement Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s reform initiative on peace operations, the High-level Panel on Peace Operations, and was a member of Secretary-General Guterres’ team reviewing the UN’s peace and security architecture.

Renata has worked on peace operations and complex emergencies at UN Headquarters and in Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti, Mali and Syria. She led major UN-wide policy and reform initiatives on peace and security issues including security sector reform, peacekeeping partnerships and crisis management capacities.

Before joining the United Nations, Renata was head of Stockholm International Peace Research Institute’s Programme on Armed Conflict and Conflict Management (1999-2005) and Deputy Director of the EastWest Institute’s European Security Programme in Budapest (1997-1999). She was Special Adviser to the European Union Council Secretariat for the first European Union crisis management operation and a member of EU High Representative Javier Solana’s 2004 Task Force on a Human Security Doctrine for Europe.

Renata holds a M.Phil and D.Phil from the University of Oxford where she was the Hedley Bull Junior Research Fellow in International Relations. She was a Fulbright Scholar at Princeton University and a visiting researcher at the former Western European Union Institute for Security Studies in Paris. She has published widely on international security matters. She speaks English, French and Swedish.

Ambassador Dr. Bonnie Jenkins is the Founder and Executive Director of the Women of Color Advancing Peace, Security and Conflict Transformation (WCAPS), a 501c3 non-profit organisation established in 2017. Jenkins is currently the Chair of the Steering Committee of the International Women’s Conference on Preventing the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction to Non-State Actors, and the Chair of the Committee on Radioactive Sources: Applications and Alternative Technologies of the National Academies of Sciences.

She is a Non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution and an Adjunct Professor at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service and a Professorial Lecturer at the George Washington Elliott School of International Affairs. She is also a Visiting Scholar at the School of Veterinary Sciences and the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania.

From 2009 to 2017, Jenkins was an Ambassador at the U.S. Department of State (DOS) where she served as Coordinator for Threat Reduction Programs (CTR) in the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation. In that role, Jenkins coordinated the Department of State’s programmes and activities to prevent weapons of mass destruction (WMD) terrorism with programmes funded by other US Departments and Agencies, and with similar programmes funded by other countries. She served as the U.S. representative to the 30-nation G7 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction and chaired the Global Partnership in 2012. Jenkins was the Department of State’s lead to the four Nuclear Security Summits that took place from 2010 – 2016.

Before returning to government in 2009, Jenkins served as Program me Officer for US Foreign and Security Policy at the Ford Foundation. She also served as Counsel on the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (9/11 Commission). Jenkins was the lead staff member conducting research, interviews, and preparing commission reports on counter terrorism policies in the Office of the Secretary of Defense and on U.S. military plans targeting al Qaeda before 9/11. She served as General Counsel to the U.S. Commission to Assess the Organization of the Federal Government to Combat the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction and worked at Rand Corporation focusing on Middle East weapons of mass destruction issues. She served as legal advisor to several WMD and conventional international implementation bodies, including the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty Joint Consultative Group, and the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization.

Professor Li Bin is professor of international relations at Tsinghua University. He was a Social Science Research Council–MacArthur Foundation Peace and Security Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Princeton University.

Li previously directed the arms control division at the Institute of Applied Physics and Computational Mathematics, where he also served as executive director of the Program for Science and National Security Studies. He was a senior fellow at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Li Bin has published a few books and numerous papers and op-eds on arms control issues. Li is a physicist and expert on nuclear disarmament. His research focuses on China’s nuclear and arms control policy and on U.S.-Chinese nuclear relations.