Second Edition of NEWSROOM

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NEWSROOM The Magazine of the Youth Group of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization


Joelle El Sawalhi The road to a Middle East WMDFZ passes through the CTBT See page 10 Sarah Bidgood Diversity initiatives, empathy, and the future of non-proliferation and disarmament See page 19


Ksenia Pirnavskaia Marrying politics and technology: inaugurating the Moscow Science Diplomacy School project See page 15 Shereen Nanish CTBTO data are supporting climate change research See page 27

23 25 27


Lassina Zerbo: A path we need to tread together


Catherine N. Mwangi: The case of the Argentine submarine ARA San Juan


Brenna Gautam: Separating science from fiction: the role of scientists in communicating benefits of the CTBT


By Ekaterina Teterina: Communicating science through social media


Joelle El Sawalhi: The road to a Middle East WMDFZ passes through the CTBT


Anjan Chamuah: Responsible science communication and the triple helix model for nuclear disarmament


Ksenia Pirnavskaia: Marrying politics and technology – inaugurating the Moscow Science Diplomacy School project


Hamzah Rifaat Hussain: The IndoPak standoff of 2019: prospects for peace, scientific cooperation and nuclear testing


Sarah Bidgood: Diversity initiatives, empathy, and the future of non-proliferation and disarmament




Kyrill Burmistrov: Meeting the SDGs through education


Cristopher Cruz: Bringing the nuclear debate into the classroom


Shereen Nanish: CTBTO data are supporting climate change research




Salwa Cassi Darling: Women in science: putting an end to a stereotype

2018-2019 Peace and Cooperation and CTBTO Global Scholar Art Campaign


A path we need to tread together

By Lassina Zerbo Executive Secretary of the CTBTO


rotecting our future requires us to confront the challenges that cast a shadow over it. Today’s young women and men are not shying from the task I can say with pride.

In the pages of this magazine, members of the CTBTO Youth Group elaborate their opposition to nuclear testing and share their desire to see nuclear weapons abolished.

So let’s take the opportunity to make this an inter-generational endeavour, combining the energy and dedication of youth group members in a spirit of humility and inquiry with the knowledge, wisdom and experience of those already familiar with the task.

There is strength travelling in numbers and the CTBTO possesses two bodies – the Youth Group (CYG) and the Group of Eminent Persons (GEM) – who together, pursuing the same goal, could We owe these committed strengthen support for and articulate young women and men more the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treathan a pat on the head - they need and de- ty and reinforce belief in nuclear disarmaserve our investment in their determination ment. to secure our future. I am impressed by the quality of the conSome of the paths they are taking may be tent in this new edition of the Youth Group’s familiar to older generations who have ex- magazine. It reaffirms my belief in the perience attempting to remove the obstacles importance of getting the voices of Youth blocking them. Group members amplified. Their eloquent response in support of the Treaty and nuclear disarmament will carry far.

Let’s take the opportunity to make this an inter-generational endeavour.

W H AT I S N E W S R O O M ? NEWSROOM is the journal of the CTBTO Youth Group (CYG), written by its members, in support of the group’s efforts to bring about a world free from nuclear tests and the final goal – a nuclear weapons free world.


The Magazine of the CTBTO Youth Group Publisher Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO)

Despite the existential threat of nuclear weapons their astronomical costs and warnings the world is coming dangerously close to using them, discussion in public about their threat is muted.

Editorial Team Peter Rickwood Design Alexander Nitzsche Cover Yulia Madinova

The magazine is part of the broader CYG newsroom project exploring how to bring the nuclear conversation in from the cold and involve more and more people in discussion about options to nuclear weapons dangers such as the test ban treaty.

For queries, please contact: Email: web: fb:


The views expressed in this publication and by CYG members are made in the personal capacity of the authors and not on behalf of the CTBTO or of the Youth Group as a whole, nor on behalf of institutions they may be associated with. For information on the CTBTO, please see:








By Catherine Nyambura Mwangi Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization Vienna, Austria

Juan Kulichevsky from Argentina - Submarino ARA San Juan, CC BY-SA 2.0,


n 8 November 2017, the Argentinian Navy submarine ARA San Juan sailed out of Ushuaia, the most southerly city in the world, into the Atlantic Ocean towards its home port of Mar del Plata. There were 44 crew members on board. The 2,000 km journey north to Mar del Plata from Ushuaia was scheduled to take 11 days, but on the seventh day at sea all contact was lost with the submarine. An extensive search and rescue operation was launched by the Argentine Navy soon to be joined by dozens of aircraft and ships from ten nations. The search for the San Juan reportedly became one of the largest multinational efforts of its kind.

The lead was found by applying combetween the submarine and the base as reported in the news,” said Mario Zampolli, a puter code written or adapted for the purpose of resolving the signals picked up by hydroacoustic engineer in the CTBTO. the IMS hydrophones. “Everybody from the The stations HA10 at Ascension Island CTBTO team was very eager to help far bein the central Atlantic Ocean and HA04 at yond their normal call of duty,” said Peter the Crozet Islands, an isolated archipelago Nielsen, a CTBTO hydroacoustic officer. in the southern Indian Ocean half-way be“This involved working long hours into tween Africa and Antarctica, are thousands of kilometres from where contact with the the night and during the weekends so as to ensure every detail of the hydroacoustic submarine was lost. event was properly checked. It was notable “We carried out a detailed analysis of the to see the impressive and diverse skillset of sound and were confident that this was not the CTBTO staff come together on this una natural event. It was an impulsive signal fortunate occasion.” — short and sharp.” Confidence in the CTBTO’s detection As well, the source of the hydroacous- and localization capability was confirmed tic event was in the vicinity of the last re- when the Argentine Navy on 1 December ported location of the ARA San Juan. The 2017 conducted a near-surface explosive CTBTO provided the information to the test charge, to the north of the search area. embassy of Argentina in Vienna. The two IMS stations at Ascension IsBut the signal was much more difficult land, and the Crozet Islands that detected to isolate and locate compared to larg- also this signal and provided its location. er events such as nuclear tests, for which The first station, HA10 is 6,000 km. away the CTBTO’s global alarm system, its IMS from this location, and the distance to sensors and IDC data processing, are de- HA04 is almost 8,000 km. signed. If the system were to detect smaller Such long detection ranges are made events automatically, it would be swamped by false alarms; a delicate balance has to possible by the surprisingly efficient propbe struck between detection sensitivity and agation of sound under water. the probability of false alarms.

The mission of the CTBTO is to put an end to nuclear explosions by everyone, everywhere, on the earth's surface, in the atmosphere, underwater and underground. Compliance with the Treaty is verified by: •

Rescuers found no trace of the 34 year old vessel. However, the global monitoring network of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) had been provided a lead. On 15 November 2017, two CTBTO hydroacoustic stations in its International Monitoring System (IMS) - had detected an unusual signal later described as a “hydroacoustic anomaly.” “It was estimated to have occurred three hours and 21 minutes after the last contact

the International Monitoring System (IMS), which monitors the globe using a network of hydrocaoustic, seismic, infrasound and radionuclide stations; the International Data Centre (IDC), which analyses the data received over a near real-time satellite link from IMS stations; and On-Site Inspection (OSI) capability.

Data from the organization’s 300 IMS facilities (337 upon completion of the network) are providing findings which can also be beneficial to civil and scientific applications such as monitoring for earthquakes, climate studies, tsunami alerts, marine life and ecology studies, volcanic ash cloud predictions, identification of meteorites disintegrating in the atmosphere and disaster response.



Map data: Google Earth

On the morning of 17 November the Argentine Ministry of Defence and Navy held a press conference providing details about the location and reliable identification of the ARA San Juan, stating that it was rest-


“The reason for this is a natural phe- consideration for the design, installation nomenon known as the Sound Fixing And and operation of the IMS hydroacoustic Ranging (SOFAR) channel,” explains Geor- network.” gios Haralabus, the CTBTO’s project manager of acoustics. Ten months after its disappearance, in spite of huge efforts, the ARA San Juan had “This channel is an undersea horizontal still not been found. The major difficulty layer of water where sound travels at a min- was the undersea topography of the search imum speed. Low speed means saving en- area, where the shallow South American ergy. Due to this natural energy preserving continental shelf is connected to a deep mechanism, acoustic waves bend towards abyssal plain by a slope riddled with subthe channel’s central axis and can become marine canyons and ravines. trapped in an invisible underwater acoustic pathway. It was at this stage that the seabed exploration company Ocean Infinity began “Sound waves confined in this pathway searching for the ARA San Juan. Its support do not bounce off the sea surface and sea- ship Seabed Constructor, equipped with a floor, where they would otherwise lose a lot fleet of deep sea automated submersibles, of energy at each bounce, and thus main- is able to provide high resolution seabed tain most of their energy, enabling them to sonar scans by “flying” very near to the sea travel great distances across the oceans,” floor. Haralabus said. In the night of 16 November 2018, one “The depth of the SOFAR channel varies year and a day after the loss of the San in different locations on the globe as it depends mainly on temperature and hydrostatic pressure. In warm tropical regions it is formed at a depth of approximately 1.5 km but it becomes shallower towards the poles.

" is now confirmed the missing Argentine submarine was found in the vicinity of where CTBTO sensors detected & located a noise a few hours after its last contact 1 yr ago. My deepest sympathy to relatives of crew". Tweet by Lassina Zerbo CTBTO Executive Secretary ing on the seabed in a location very near to the hydroacoustic anomaly detected by CTBTO. Catherine Nyambura Mwangi is an intern in the CTBTO's External Relations, Protocol and International Cooperation Section. She has expertise in diplomacy, disarmament, nuclear non-proliferation and political affairs and has worked for various diplomatic missions and the United Nations system. She holds a Master of Arts in International Relations from the United States International University-Africa.

“That is why the hydrophones of the IMS network, although they are always installed in the SOFAR channel to optimize detection distances, are deployed at different depths at each hydroacoustic station. The SOFAR channel phenomenon is only one of many scientific elements taken into

Gage Skidmore,, CC BY-SA 2.0

Juan, Ocean Infinity announced that the on-board search team had located the submarine. High resolution cameras mounted on a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) tethered to the ship confirmed the discovery. The wreck was lying in a ravine, at a depth of 900 meters, approximately 600 km east of Comodoro Rivadavia in the Atlantic Ocean.

E D U C AT I O N & M E D I A

Communicating science through social media


mid cultural diversity, economic and social development, the inability to engage science in our daily lives is considered one of the most daunting problems of the modern world. Building public awareness and support for such burning issues as nuclear non-proliferation, maintaining global peace and security, and putting an end to nuclear explosions goes hand in hand with the effort to broaden public scientific understanding and find new means of introducing non-scientists to science. Communicating science varies from media coverage of conferences to online educational platforms. However, social media is credited with increasing audiences in all possible fields of interests and study. Better public understanding of science and discussion about it may strengthen the link between science and society, bringing both sides to the bargaining table, raising concern and curiosity in scientific development while both parties remain bound by common interest. Clarifying the work of the CTBTO to the public using social media platforms to keep audiences updated about evolving research is a means of involving the public, providing a good grasp of its science - which seems to be an integral and essential part of building rational attitude towards global problems.

By Ekaterina Teterina Nuclear Research University (MEPhI) Moscow, Russian Federation

A 2007 survey of scientists on the impact of social media found it gave them fresh perspectives. Nearly one third interviewed said social media changed the nature of their decision-making with information that enabled audiences to discover more problem solving options. From this perspective, social media platforms raise public engagement among all levels of society. The questions of course is why the public needs to be kept informed and how to make the information comprehensible? The CTBTO is driven by data and providing means to visualise it and explaining how it is put to use is a first objective in raising public interest and awareness and winning support for the test ban treaty.




Sharing educational multimedia content, ensuring opportunities to collaborate and cooperate, publishing research findings, constitutes a mechanism that can be implemented on-line promoting research and from this dialogue forging a bond of trust. This contributes to providing free and beneficial knowledge and supports the UN’s fourth Sustainable Development Goal – quality education and learning opportunities for everyone. The digitalisation of modern society is a driving force for the progress, and by implementing the integration of science into society on social media platforms, ensuring free access to educational resources and latest research, is to lead the world to a better future.

Wellcome Collection. CC BY

Social media also enables the CTBTO to widen its impact and enhance the reputation of its science by permitting public scrutiny of recent studies and to provide society with trustworthy information.

Social media provides a vast array of techniques that can be utilised to increase better understanding.



Ekaterina Teterina studies international scientific and technological cooperation at the Nuclear Research University MEPhI. She engages actively in cross-cultural cooperation among young people at the UNESCO Associated School and participated in various international events, including the festival «Euriade», a conference on global development with the Queen of Sweden, and in exchange programmes in Austria and Germany.


By Brenna Gautam J.D. Candidate at Georgetown University Law Center Washington, D.C.


cientific misunderstanding nearly derailed two landmark cold war arms control treaties during their negotiation and ratification in the United States until scientists came to their rescue.

Negotiators of the treaties became more preoccupied with concepts that at the time were science fiction instead of focusing on the actual risks and benefits of the treaties.


A paucity of scientific understanding by U.S. negotiators in the 1970s nearly sidelined ratification prospects for the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty.

At the time such laser techniques had not yet been developed by scientists. Military figures involved in the debate, which grew to include the US Department of Defense and Central Intelligence Agency, explicitly acknowledged that laser defenses and other futuristic weapons technologies sounded like fictional props from the 1930’s science fiction comic strip Buck Rogers. But such considerations, they argued, were nevertheless important to long-term military interests in maintaining U.S. capabilities to develop cutting-edge military technologies.

According to evidence from backchanIn both documented cases scientists nel communications during negotiations The SALT delegation included not only played a key role informing lawyers and various members of the US SALT delega- lawyers and policymakers, but scientists. politicians, dispelling their fears and help- tion disagreed over the concern. Their presence was vital to addressing the ing them reach consensus.






And ultimately it will be the voice of scientists that breaks the logjam in the US holding back ratification from 1999 when politicians expressed concern the CTBTO International Monitoring System (IMS) would not be able to accurately detect seismic activity.


Yoichi Okamoto,, Public Domain,


On July 12, 1971, in a top-secret telegram, defensive capabilities would be a brake on the need to develop still more destructive a US State Department official warned US Secretary State William Rogers of "firmly offensive weapons systems. held divergent views" between the Arms Yet despite this mutually beneficial goal Control and Disarmament Agency, Joint of de-escalation, negotiations quickly en- Chiefs of Staff, and Office of the Secretary countered challenges to the question of of Defense on the issue of "whether we whether weapons such as defensive laser should now attempt [to] deal with…continsystems should also be limited under the gencies such as laser techniques for ABM (anti ballistic missile) defense." treaty's language.

Scientists and the ABM Treaty Treaties such as the test ban make provision for the place of new and undeveloped technologies to add to its arsenal of tools monitoring the planet for any evidence of nuclear testing. But in the 1970s, the role of new technologies and scientific uncertainty by U.S. negotiators nearly undermined ratification prospects for the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty. The role of scientists was significant in making progress in arms control diplomacy. U.S. Air Force, VIRIN: 051031-F-0000S-009.JPG


Conceived during the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT), the ABM Treaty was designed to reduce the need for United States and the Soviet Union to build up greater offensive capabilities to overcome each other’s defenses. In theory capping




phasers.” As if foreshadowing the eventual dilemma posed by unmanned aerial drones (a weapons technology not developed until 1993), the Senate Armed Services Committee hearings also pressed for Scientists and the INF Treaty information relating to whether futuristic remotely piloted vehicles would be covered Well informed scientists also played a key by the Treaty. role in the US Senate’s ratification in 1988 of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Again, scientists were able to provide tes(INF) Treaty dispelling fears of the Sen- timony and expert advice and clarify for ate Committee on Foreign Relations. Over Senators which concepts were technically the course of the negotiation, committee members became alarmed by a hypothetProviding scientific ical question posed about whether a "hypersonic boost glide vehicle"—a theoretical evidence today is vital to concept still on the drawing board—would be prohibited. ratification of the CTBT. likelihood of future, hypothetical weapons concepts becoming a reality and as such, helped move the ABM Treaty negotiations forward.

Legislative questions regarding futuristic technologies expanded to include questions regarding theoretical weapons concepts such as high powered lasers, microwave technologies, and "Star-Trek style

The CTBTO and Beyond Providing scientific evidence today, is vital to ratification of the CTBT. By sharing the technical capabilities of the CTBTO’s verification regime with non-scientific audiences, including how the technology has advanced since 1999. scientists can ultimately play a role in bringing the treaty into force. By acting as expert, non-partisan champions of science, explaining how the CTBTO is valuable in areas beyond arms control, such as in tsunami warnings, informing earth sciences, scientists can play a key role in helping convince U.S. lawmakers of its importance and ultimately facilitate its entry into force.

feasible and should be addressed in negotiations, and which were merely hypothet- Brenna Gautam is a J.D. Candidate at ical concepts, far removed from actual de- Georgetown University Law Center, interested in international law and the law of velopment. armed conflict.



U.S. Marine Corps -, Public Domain,

NASA file photo


The road to a Middle East WMDFZ passes through the CTBT


Needed: A concerted effort



t the 1995 NPT Review Con- ing or using these weapons and their assoference, an expected out- ciated delivery systems. come was for “the establishment of an effectively The proposal also remained a central verifiable Middle East zone discussion subject in 2017 at the first NPT free of weapons of mass destruction, nuclear, chemical and biological, and their delivery systems”. However, the Middle East remained at the center of debates over non-compliance with IAEA safeguards and the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

However, divisions among members of the Arab League at the 2017 PrepCom froze any chance of having a unified statement on the topic, with three distinct working papers presented by regional members on a way forward for the WMDFZ . Due to this split among member states in the region, a concerted approach relying on good faith negotiations is required in order to reach a WMDFZ.

Until trust is built, a full zone will most likely not see the light. If successful, CBMs can lead to a mutual agreement among opponents in the region to join the CTBT within a set timeframe. If no mutual agreement is reached, any standalone efforts by Middle Eastern countries to ratify the treaty can pressure others to do the same.

Focus now should be on preventing regional enemies, Iran and Saudi Arabia, from building nuclear weapons, since the latter openly stated that it would "go nuclear" if the former were to go in that direction.

A proposal for a Weapons of Mass DeBy Joelle El Sawalhi struction-Free Zone (WMDFZ) was put forWorld Bank Keeping in mind that Iran and Saudi ward by Egypt in 1990. Although no tangiWashington, D.C. Arabia would both require testing to proble progress has been made in that regard, duce a sophisticated nuclear weapon, both this effort is worth pursuing and can be sigsignature and ratification of the CTBT by nificantly supported by the ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Trea- Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) and its these two countries are of paramount importance. ty (CTBT) by countries in the region. successors in 2018 and 2019. In 2018 the UN General Assembly adopted a decision by vote mandating the UN Secretary General to convene a MEWMDFZ conference before the end of 2019 and the issue will likely stay relevant at the 2020 NPT Review Conference.



Such diplomatic efforts will need to be complemented by public education and engagement campaigns on the dangers of weapons of mass destruction and the need to abolish them, which in turn builds public support for creating the zone.

Jack W. Aeby,, CC BY 2.0

This process can start by pressing for the ratification and entry into force of the CTBT by Iran, Egypt, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Syria’s signature.

Military standoffs over supremacy in the region have led to the use of weapons of mass destruction, namely chemical weapons. This highlighted the nonchalance over crossing thresholds considered taboo in other regions of the world.

A WMDFZ plays a critical role in sustaining the permanence of the NPT, as it was part of the "bargain" when the NPT was extended in 1995. For this WMDFZ proposal to be implemented in the Middle East, states would commit to refrain from acquiring, possessing, manufacturing, test-

Confidence building measures (CBMs) such as information sharing and establishing a multilateral taskforce to address concerns and grievances, among other issues, are also vital to circumvent enshrined decades-long rivalries in the Middle East.

Other essential steps in the WMDFZ trail would include getting Syria to sign and ratify the CTBT, and more importantly, convincing Israel to give up its non-NPT status. Almost all of the states in the region have pledged to abandon nuclear weapons by adopting the NPT. As such, Israel has no strategic reason not to join the NPT, especially after hav-

Joelle El Sawalhi is a Research Analyst at the World Bank Group working on the 2030 Agenda and the synergies between the different Sustainable Development Goals. She has a wealth of experience in the field of international cooperation and partnerships. She was previously at UNIDIR, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Almost all of the states the Presidency of the Council of Ministers of Lebanon, and the United Nations sysin the region have tem. Joelle graduated from Georgetown University with a MS in Foreign Service pledged to abandon (MSFS), and from the Lebanese American nuclear weapons by University with a BA in Political Science and International Affairs. She also spent adopting the NPT. time at Sciences Po Paris as an exchange student. The author is writing in her perAchieving a WMDFZ would be a break- sonal capacity and the views expressed in through for a volatile region like the Mid- this article are her own and not those of dle East. Not only would ratifying the CTBT her organization. help revitalize a stalled process, but the treaty itself would benefit from these ratifications, as the Middle East includes three of the eight states whose ratification is required for the treaty to enter into force. This is a golden opportunity that should be seized by the international community as a whole. ing sustained its arsenal without nuclear testing. Its absence has already been at the center of many debates held by neighboring regional states who are still in conflict with Israel.






cience gave birth to nuclear weapons and science has been an essential tool blunting the threat of their devastating power. Anjan Chamuah calls for a new initiative between scientists and other partners with communication with the public its key to revitalize flagging nuclear non-proliferation initiatives., Nevit Dilmen, CC BY-SA



nologies for detecting nuclear testing and illicit weapons programmes.

By Anjan Chamuah Jawaharlal Nehru University New Delhi, India

ment together to put knowledge to use to It is time to take the diffusion of knowl- create innovative new solutions would well edge and the communication of science serve the purpose. and technology about nuclear non-proliferation out of the arena of specialization As it is, the CTBTO successfully engages and unpack it for the general public. universities in basic research, industries to produce commercial goods, and governScience communication to succeed ments for regulation. needs to inform non-scientists about recent advances in science, technology, other Henry Etzkowitz and Loet Leydesdorff, areas of scientific development, its history, originators in the 1990s of the Triple Helix and ensure there is a basis of understand- model proposed academia lead the way ing. and anticipated innovation, hybrid systems and new chemistry as the yield of To guide international disarmament re- such a marriage. search a scientific laboratory whose international participants can share knowledge The model is based on knowledge-intenis of utmost necessity to foster scientific sive development and anticipates, reflects cooperation and share its work with the and adapts to different conditions across public. The recent inconclusive end to the regional, local and national conditions NPT PrepCom meeting in New York and crossing institutional boundaries to furdismal prospects for nuclear arms control ther communicate and diffuse knowledge in general adds urgency to the proposal. about the benefits of nuclear disarmament. New tools, as yet unused for arms conScientist across the world play a signiftrol, such as the Triple Helix (TH) model, icant role in nuclear arms control, for exbringing academia, industry, and govern- ample, developing and improving the tech-



By pursuing the noble goal of nuclear disarmament the scientific research community would explore technologies to support it through collaboration with industry and government. Institutional support will be necessary to initiate the process. Networking and communication will be crucial in streamlining knowledge and technology. Since the 1950’s the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs has brought scientists and other public figures together and contributed to treaties including the NPT and is a possible precursor to the outcomes of a Triple Helix disarmament model.

Holding communication to account To ensure robust results and outcomes for an issue such as nuclear disarmament, accountability, transparency, trust among participating the actors and stakeholders is of utmost importance to responsible science communication and accountability for failure or success has to be an important element in a Triple Helix disarmament model. Research shows that responsible innovation is the result of a collaborative and collective undertaking focused on caring

Technology, it has been said, is not only about the future through collective stewardship of science and innovation. Irre- a machine, it has social, political and culsponsible innovations are seldom the out- tural implications. Science communicators thus act as mediators communicating and come of a single, irresponsible actor. disseminating scientific knowledge to the The participation of different stakehold- general public. ers and getting the views of actors through Addressing specific social, cultural and group discussions, semi-structured interviews, debates and workshops also enhanc- political conditions are also essential for es proper dissemination of knowledge to effective communication. target groups. Responsible science communication Inviting input from stakeholders and bolstered by a Triple Helix disarmament the wider public can change and direct in- model sows the seeds of innovation and novation ensuring responsiveness and evo- aims to enhance public understanding lution introducing reflexive feedback and of science, creating awareness, building science literacy, heralding interest, confiinsight into actions. dence and willingness to engage in science Effective science communication has to and providing empowerment. overcome institutional, social and techniEmbedding values like knowledge diffucal complexities. Building interest in science through media, dialogue, applying sion is not a linear process - preferably, it skills and organizing activities can lead to is an iterative process where anticipation, participation, deliberation, responsiveness appreciation and enjoyment of it. and reflexivity of all the stakeholders deterAnd for the lay person the AEIOU analo- mine proper dissemination and implementation. gy approach is of help by promoting: • • • • •

Awareness, Enjoyment, Interest, Opinion-forming and Understanding.

rectly implemented; instead, explored its prospects by making some prototype. On successful launched of the prototype into the market substantiated by government institutions, the work of the scientist becomes fruitful, and the dimension of anticipation takes shape in responsible communication of the exact product. The participation of different stakeholders and actors’ views through group discussions, semi-structured interviews, debates and workshops also enhances proper dissemination of knowledge to target groups. Further, according to Zahinos, Singh, and González-Benítez (2013) deliberation is also ensured through the exchange of opinions and viewpoints, weighing and balancing arguments, and offering reflection and associations for streamlining of knowledge and information.

Anjan Chamuah is a PhD scholar in Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. His research focusses on new and emerging technology, responsible innovation, technology governance, sectoral system of innovation, science communication, triple So for responsible science communica- helix, agriculture and technological dytion, the dimension of anticipation plays a namics in society. significant role; which means exploring the future of idea, mechanisms, concepts, and prototypes. The advent of new technology to protect against nuclear threat are not di-



By Ksenia Pirnavskaia Nuclear Research University (MEPhI) Moscow, Russian Federation

Inspired by the 2018 CTBTO Science and Diplomacy Symposium in Vienna, CYG member Ksenia Pirnavskaia instigated the first Science Diplomacy School in Moscow in the spring of 2019.


losing the gap between science and diplomacy is a crucial task, especially in the field of nuclear non-proliferation, disarmament and nuclear testing, due to the complexity of these particular issues and close linkage of politics and science, writes Ksenia Pirnavskaia.

Margoyev was among experts participating in the first Science Diplomacy School held in Moscow at the National Research Nuclear University (MEPhI) and Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) university 24-27April 2019.

She was among CYG members participating in the second CTBT Science and Diplomacy Symposium held in Vienna in college and make it more feasible for students to bridge the gap between the fields 2018. of science and diplomacy. What I noticed during the event was that the idea of integrating people from strik- The school ingly different fields in the framework of From 24-27April, 30 pre-selected undernuclear testing issues – is challenging but fruitful and rewarding both for the organ- graduate and graduate students from 15 leading universities in Moscow, St. Petersizers and participants. burg, Samara and Novosibirsk, including Nevertheless, it is always a problem students from India and Kazakhstan, took for diplomats and others who may have part in the first Science Diplomacy School brushed science aside to really under- at the National Research Nuclear Universistand, appreciate and benefit from science ty (MEPhI) and Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) univercommunication. sity. Inspired by the example of the Science The school was organized by the InterDiplomacy school established by the Trieste, Italy, based World Academy of Scienc- national Center for Public Diplomacy, of es for the Advancement of Science in De- the Science Diplomacy Club MEPhI, and veloping Countries, I was determined to the Student Scientific Society MGIMO of by the International Security Club MGIMO. promote science diplomacy in Russia. But I had to consider the challenge for students majoring in science to dive into international relations and equally for students majoring in international relations or law to keep up with scientific knowledge and approaches. My idea was to attract students from different cities in Russia, because younger minds are more open to different problem solving approaches and are eager to learn more without necessarily having much experience.

Participants with technical and humanitarian backgrounds analyzed topical issues of international nuclear security and discussed possibilities for improving arms control regimes. They engaged distinguished experts from such organizations as the PIRcenter, MEPhI, MGIMO, RIAC, the Gorbachev-foundation, Gorchakov Foundation, the Arms Control Association (ACA), the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI), CNS, Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey (USA).

But in order to nurture a generation familiar with science and diplomacy, we need to start in the first years of PAVEL PALAZHCHENKO (L)



U.S. Government, free of known restrictions under copyright law

Marrying politics and technology: inaugurating the Moscow Science Diplomacy School project

Three online sessions were dedicated to the CTBTO, its youth group and Women in Peace and Security, organized by

U.S. Air Force photo by Michael Peterson/Released


“As much as scientists have to be informed about politics, politicians and policy experts must know the basics of science, especially in the field of weapons of mass destruction, to provide correct analysis and make right decisions based on it,” says Adlan Margoyev, director of the PIR-center “Russia and nuclear non-proliferation programme.


Natalia Zhurina, CYG regional coordinator for Eastern Europe.

clear weapons delivery, and missile interception systems.

Specialists introduced participants to 2. The requirement for international the nuts and bolts of the CTBTO and IAEA’s conferences on disarmament every work. Panel discussions on denuclearizathree years: the agenda of the first tion of the Korean Peninsula, Iran’s nucleshould consider hypersonic weapons ar programme and international relations and US Russia commitment to reducwere also held. As well, rocket technoloing arsenals, with others committing gies, classifications of ballistic missiles, not to increase theirs. nuclear physics including the physics of explosion, geospatial tools for monitoring "The MEPhI–MGIMO Science nuclear facilities, as well as the possibility Diplomacy School is the best of nuclear and radiological terrorism, were discussed. grass-root initiative in this field I

have taken part in over the past few A paramount goal of the school was to integrate young people from different years, and I do hope they backgrounds into teams to provide the hold such sessions regularly." draft of a model arms control agreement for the 21st century. By applying scientific knowledge and diplomatic approaches to Adlan Margoyev solving international security conundrums participants learned from each other and results were more granular and sophisti- 3. The introduction of ceilings for the cated. number of nuclear warheads, which could later be reduced proportionally Among policy recommendations was by all the de-facto nuclear powers. the creation of a treaty providing different categories of states: official nuclear weap- 4. The guarantee of a nuclear-free peaceons possessors; de-facto possessors ; states ful zone in outer space. that voluntarily abandoned nuclear weapons and; states without nuclear weapons. On the school’s final day, participants presented their projects on the future of Other recommendations included: arms control for evaluation to RIAC, MEPhI and PIR Center experts. Pavel Pala1. The enforcement of comprehensive zhchenko, chief English interpreter for monitoring over nuclear weapons, nu- Mikhail Gorbachev, and an arms control



specialist, acknowledged the high level of training and critical thinking of the novice specialists. He also recommended continuing exploring ways to improve arms control regimes. Recommendations will be edited into a single joint document for distribution to institutions, such as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, the PIR-center, CNS, NTI and others. Next year’s plan is to broaden the horizons of the school and invite students from different countries, especially from Annex 2 states. Hopefully, you have already reserved a week for the Science Diplomacy School II in Moscow in 2020. Ksenia Pirnavskaia is junior student at the MEPhI, pursuing her bachelor’s degree in the field of international scientific and technological cooperation. She is also a founder of the Science Diplomacy Club MEPHI, which is a youth department of the International Center for Public Diplomacy, MEPHI.


By Hamzah Rifaat Hussain PTV World Islamabad, Pakistan


n 14 February 2019 in Indian administered Kashmir a suicide bomber drove his car into a bus carrying Indian military personnel in the town of Pulwama killing 40 and wounding others.

What followed became one of the deadliest confrontations between two nuclear armed

states, both CTBT Annex 2 States - among the Yet despite the prospects of the treaeight who have yet to ratify the treaty. ty currently winning support from South Asia’s uneasy neighbours seeming unlikely, In a dogfight an Indian fighter jet was it is a persuasive reminder that solutions shot down and its pilot captured to be re- are at hand for building confidence and leased in a peace gesture by Pakistan. mitigating tensions in such a hostile and fragile environment. A multilateral mechThe conflict not only challenged peace anism such as the CTBT, experts say, could and stability in South Asia but reignited potentially play a vital role in blunting a bidebate in the region. It brought into per- lateral dispute. spective nuclear weapons testing, the nuclear non-proliferation regime, scientific The view of experts such as Pervez Hoodcooperation, India’s ‘Cold Start’ doctrine, bhoy, a nuclear physicist and activist teachnuclear deterrence and tactical nuclear ing at Forman Christian College in Lahore weapons. remain downbeat. Both nuclear powers are on the brink and scientific cooperation reWithin India there has recently been a mains remote, he said. He maintains that call to test its thermonuclear capability. Kr- nuclear deterrence will hold but the situaishnamurthy Santhanam, who participat- tion is vulnerable to escalation. ed in the May 1998 tests, urged New Delhi to try again and refrain from signing the The bones of contention are conflicting CTBT. Such voices are bound to be further narratives and threat perceptions. India emboldened given the current environ- long maintains that Pakistan carries out ment in which Pakistan could respond by state sponsored terrorism on its soil and testing theatre nuclear weapons. must be punished with punitive strikes on its territory. A response has been its Cold In addition, Pakistan’s stance towards Start doctrine allowing its superiority in signing the CTBT unless India takes the conventional forces to retaliate and inflict lead is also not likely to change. The ten- considerable damage on Pakistan with the or of global nuclear non-proliferation with aim of preventing a nuclear attack. the recent scrapping of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) discourages bold moves.


17, CC BY

Marco Verch,, CC BY



In an interview Hoodbhoy said he believes that Pakistan, which is conventionally inferior, would consider a response with tactical nuclear weapons to nullify the potency of a possible Indian incursion. Such a possibility is a geopolitical nightmare and bodes ill for regional stability. Another element in South Asian tensions is continued resentment by Pakistan towards the India-US nuclear deal of 2008. Against popular belief, not all Americans supported the George W. Bush administration agreement. Tom Shea, a leading expert on nuclear disarmament and an adjunct, non-resident fellow at the Federation of American Scientists said in an interview the deal was intended to encourage the sale of nuclear power reactors by the US which never materialized.

ment between India and Pakistan will continue to be in its national interest. The spiral effect of terrorism would jeopardize its Belt and Road initiative and escalation between the two nuclear armed countries would hurt China as much as it would hurt any other country. Both India and Pakistan have a stake in countering terrorism. This becomes a moot point given that both countries have best practices which can thwart terrorism - a subject which is a bone of contention between them.

It is perhaps unsurprising, that the current state of relations between India and Pakistan, based on mounting hostility and threats, shows no end. A newly elected government will also determine the course of peace in the region and whether dialogue In the aftermath of the Pulwama Attack resumes. the restraint threshold has been lowered between India and Pakistan and escalation A combination of Russian-US and Siwith the chance of a fresh confrontation re- no-US rivalry, also contributes to the conmains a possibility unless pressing issues clusion that sustainable peace and scienare addressed, he said in an email inter- tific cooperation remains elusive, a fact view. echoed by the Pakistani experts. against jihadist organizations, says Brigadier Feroz Hassan Khan of the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, there is good reason to feel alarmed.

Terrorism and Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal

There has however, been a small chink of light in the gloom surrounding the prospects for the CTBT in the region. Both India and Pakistan have been invited by Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the CTBTO, to participate in the organization’s activities as observers - and Pakistan has accepted.

A point of contention between India and Pakistan has been over claims Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal could fall into the hands of terrorists. Pakistan insists its Personnel Reliability Programmes (PRPs) rigorously vet Nevertheless, Pakistan’s sense of griev- individuals working in its nuclear facilities Observer status would give both states ance towards the deal continues and is providing the assurance of security. access to data from its International Monlikely to increase in the near future given itoring System checking the planet for any its loosening ties with both the US and InDespite the vested interest of both states evidence of nuclear explosions, a signifidia. Shea also proposes a mechanism to in- to counter the collective threat of terrorism cant contribution to easing any suspicions centivize states to work towards non-prolif- said Khan, such programmes as the PRPs of clandestine nuclear testing. eration by getting them to understand the are shrouded in secrecy and there would be pernicious effects of nuclear war. Dialogue no point discussing them further, particuThe data also has civilian applications, and discussion with the international com- larly not with an adversary such as India or whose many benefits include early warnmunity taking a key role are required he vice versa, he said. ing of the onset of the monsoon season. said. But dialogue, as of now, is absent. Such dividends could act as introductory In addition to Khan’s analysis, the India offers to the treaty. And hindsight after the Cyber warfare Pakistan crisis cannot be divorced from re- recent Pulwama conflict could also lead to gional dynamics and the role of great pow- acknowledgement of the need for outside Today’s battlefield is also defined by hy- ers. China’s emergence as a global power independent help - of the confidence buildbrid warfare of which cyber warfare is an and a direct rival to the US is another crit- ing kind represented by the CTBT. integral component. Both India and Paki- ical variable in the aftermath of the 2019 stan non-state hacktivists have been using India Pakistan standoff. Beijing had urged Hamzah Rifaat is an anchor for PTV World, cyber space to launch malicious attacks both sides to de-escalate and although the Pakistan's only English news channel. He for two decades mostly defacing websites. UN Security Council on 1 May declared holds a diploma in World Affairs and ProShea says that in in sensitive environments, Jaish E Mohammad’s Masood Azhar, the fessional Diplomacy from the Bandarastates are more inclined towards building alleged mastermind of the Pulwama attack naike Diplomatic Training Institute in their infrastructure to dissuade cyber-at- an international terrorist, initially it de- Colombo, Sri Lanka. He was a freelance tacks and prepare for offensive counter- layed support. writer and blogger for the Friday Times measures as preemption. Given the history and studied non-proliferation and terrorof India and Pakistan cyber attacks warfare China has a key role to play and peace ism studies at the Center for Nonproliferand current tensions, needed deals or po- between India and Pakistan and prospects ation Studies. He was also a Graduate Editential avenues for cooperation to reduce for banning nuclear testing could become torial Assistant for Women's International cyber security risks appear remote. jeopardized by regional dynamics. Yet Chi- Perspective, a global source for women's na’s internal struggle against Uighur sep- perspectives, based in Monterey. Without India stopping its repression aratists in Xinjiang province would also in Kashmir, and Pakistan taking action mean that crisis prevention and manage-




DIVERSITY INITIATIVES, EMPATHY, AND THE FUTURE OF NON-PROLIFERATION AND DISARMAMENT thinking could lead to new collaborative approaches for controlling the spread of nuclear weapons that take into account the priorities, positions, and contributions of diverse actors.


f the last year has shown us anything, it is that the gender imbalance in nuclear policy is not going to fix itself. Thanks to a host of new reports issued in 2018 and 2019, the lack of gender diversity at NGOs, in governments, and within international diplomacy is better defined than ever before. The results are sobering but not surprising.

liferation, and Disarmament Diplomacy.” An update to the Institute’s pioneering work on the intersection of gender and nuclear diplomacy published in 2016, the new report finds that women represented no more than 37 percent of registered delegates at key UN non-proliferation and disarmament fora. Although these numbers constitute an improvement over the gender gap UNIDIR first observed three years ago, the authors find that greater representation has not necessarily translated into greater influence in the intervening years.

working in the field by reducing the role of implicit bias in assessing merit. At the same time, they help make it more likely that women at all career stages receive the recognition—and compensation—their expertise deserves. New data from both the private and public sector likewise show that practices

“Despite the increased numbers ... it is still possible to attend a session of the Conference on Disarmament ... and not hear a single woman speak.”

“Despite the increased numbers,” they note, “it is still possible to attend a session Nearly forty years after Carol Cohn first of the Conference on Disarmament, where called out the dearth of women in the nu- dozens of state representatives take the clear strategy world, we now have the data floor, and not hear a single woman speak.” to prove that this gap Understanding the is not only widespread reasons for this disbut persistent. These connect, and deterfindings demonstrate mining what can that it will take susbe done about it, tained action from all should be a priorisegments of the nuclety for all entities for which reduce the “gender tax” on women ar policy community which international in the workplace enable them to stay in the nuclear policy field longer. As a result, they if we are ever going to security is a focus. are more likely to rise through the ranks, make things right. Fortunately, a develop greater authority, and exert more While some of this number of organi- influence on the shape of policy long term. recent research reafzations have already New America’s 2019 study “The ‘Consenfirms what those of CAROL COHN put forward a range sual Straitjacket’: Four Decades of Women us in the field may alof approaches to in National Security,” identifies numerous ready have suspected (yes, men really do promote parity in representation and im- approaches to operationalize these recomout-represent women on foreign policy pact that provide a useful place to start. mendations. These include offering paid panels by a ratio of three to one), others These include adopting concrete policies family leave and flexible work options, highlight trends that are harder to pick up that require gender diversity among job enacting effective sexual harassment trainthrough observation alone. candidates, on panels, or in grant proposals ing, and institutionalizing mentorship and to prevent defaulting to men when equally sponsorship programs. Many of these are teased out in the 2019 qualified women can do the job. Implementing recommendations like UN Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) study, “Still Behind the Curve: Deliberate actions like these can in- these is often part of the process of genGender Balance in Arms Control, Non-Pro- crease the number and visibility of women der mainstreaming, or considering how

any proposed action or policy will affect all genders. This process helps to ensure that inequity isn’t inadvertently perpetuated in ways that may not always be apparent. When done effectively, gender mainstreaming requires us to reflect critically about our own privilege, power, and unconscious biases. These paradigms affect how we interact with one another, and they often reinforce systemic barriers that limit access for women in nuclear policy. While none of these approaches offers a quick fix for addressing the gender gap in our field, they are worth pursuing in the interest of improving outcomes in non-proliferation, disarmament, and arms control. Given the stakes of our work, ensuring that we are not passing over good ideas simply because the women who propose them don’t have a seat at the table is a matter of national security. What’s more, private sector research has shown that companies

By Sarah Bidgood James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies Monterey, California

This outcome is one that is desperately needed today. Deep divides threaten the viability of the international non-proliferation regime, and states with opposing nawith diverse employees generate above-av- tional security interests appear disinteresterage returns when compared with their ed in finding common ground. more homogeneous counterparts. The positive correlation between gender repShoring up multilateral nuclear diploresentation and performance is one that macy—including by seeing through the the nuclear policy community cannot af- entry into force of the CTBT—requires ford to ignore, especially given the chal- bridge-building between actors with starklenges it faces now. ly different priorities and threat perceptions. This process cannot happen in the Acting on these recommendations can absence of civility, inclusive dialogue, and have another impact, which, while less a willingness to compromise—qualities obvious, is also important to internation- that appear to be in short supply. Of course, al peace and security: the very steps re- operationalizing diversity initiatives within quired to increase diversity in our field can the nuclear policy workplace cannot sinalso increase our capacity for empathy, glehandedly make the international nucleself-awareness, and flexibility in our sub- ar dialogue more empathic. Still, it is worth stantive work. thinking seriously about how progress in one domain could lead to progress in the There is ample research to suggest that other. This outcome is one from which we the ability to place one’s self in another would all benefit regardless of gender. It is person’s shoes is key to successful nego- also yet another argument for finally devottiations and the making of effective pol- ing the attention to gender diversity that it icy. Becoming more adept at this way of has deserved for decades.






Sarah Bidgood is a senior research associate and project manager at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS) in Monterey, California. Her areas of focus include U.S.-Russia non-proliferation cooperation, multilateral diplomacy, and gender issues. She has been a member of the CTBTO Youth Group since its founding in February 2016.


Women in science: Putting an end to a stereotype


cience. It is a familiar word in the English language, seven letters long containing two syllables.

This will help to give them confidence to pursue their career, as well as provide valuable insight and knowledge to help strengthen their expertise and skills, she said. It also allows women to get into the network of their field.

Short, simple, sweet. Short, but it carries a long history. Simple, but the art of it is difficult. Sweet, but the journey to the product is bitter. Science is the pursuit of the truth and the good. The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) uses it to help provide safety and security to the world. Its science covering us like a blanket, ensuring we are guarded with the utmost care.

For Bittner, her family was her mentor. She came from a scientific background, and this may explain why she enjoys the scientific aspect of the CTBO so much, she said. By Salwa Cassi Darling Member of the CTBTO Youth Group Vienna, Austria

All photographs: CTBTO

From this perspective, science is the good, a protector and a guardian. The truth remains the pursuit of unanswered quesDuring her career as a scientist, she tions. And as it is put to our assistance to said, she has not experienced a male feunderstand threats to our survival science male division as far as she has been treated is assuming more significance and more as a scientist. women are pursuing scientific careers. Jolanta Kusmierczyk-Michulec, also an The CTBTO provides a good example analyst specialising in atmospheric sciof how to maintain a balance between the ence, shares the same view about not betruth and the good. Not only does its International Monitoring System translate into waveform signals the dynamics of a living planet that could also be evidence of nuclear explosions, but its techniques are also advancing scientific knowledge about the planet and offering advance warning of natural disasters such as tsunamis.

Confidence and motivation are incredibly important for any career path a woman decides to pursue.

Of course someone needs to interpret the significance of the data from 300 monitoring facilities after machines have processed it and that is the task of data analysts in the CTBTO.

ing treated differently from male scientists during her scientific career. While both women have many male colleagues they would be happy to see more women pursue choose science oriented career path.

It is a commonly held stereotype that Yet no one is born with an affinity for women are more drawn to the ‘arts’ and a specific subject, Kusmierczyk-Michulec men are inclined towards the ‘sciences.’ said in an inerview. If you enjoy a subject then pursue it. You cannot force someone Some may think that women in science to become interested in something that often feel the need to prove themselves in a they dislike, she said. self-proclaimed ‘man’s world’, and that for them, science is no longer the pursuit of One of the reasons why she became so the truth or the good, but it is the pursuit interested in science, is because she had a of justification. good physics teacher, which led her to enjoying the subject more. But there is no difference between male scientists and female scientist, “ we are all Francesca Giovannini, a strategy and scientists at the end of the day,” Paulina policy planning officer, in an interview said Bittner, a data wave analyst for the CTBTO, she believes that it is extremely important said in an interview. for women to have a strong mentor in their specific field.

Giovannini also believes that young women need to publish more, and that writing is key. This will lead to garnering more interest from other women, as well as leading them to being taken seriously as scholars. All three women said that confidence and motivation are incredibly important for any career path a woman decides to pursue. Giovannini also believes in the need to maintain a balance. An international career is quite isolating, she said, because it is a constant choice between family and work. This struggle was also echoed by Kusmierczyk-Michulec, who said that she loves her family, and the atmosphere at home motivates her as well. In that way, her family is another mentor for her, providing her with constant support and motivation to work harder. It can be difficult to balance both a family and a career at the same time, but it only proves how strong-willed and confident these women are in their lives. As Giovannini said, it is important to defend your way of life. Being self-disciplined, self-motivated and self-confident is key in pursuing any type of career path, no matter the field. From theories of vitalism to theories of relativity and from looking at the sun to harnessing the power of the atom, science is always growing, ever changing. It has long leap frogged the boundaries that confined it to pursuing the truth. With its potential to control and destroy, scientists have to consider how much science is too much science. The pursuit of the good is tangled with the pursuit of the truth. Whatever the answer to such dilemmas it will be women as well as men who find them. Salwa Cassi Darling is 17 and a member of the CTBTO Youth Group. She has many passions, among which are writing, theatre and spreading the message of the CTBTO.




clear explosions is a scientific enterprise. Broaden collaboration Yet most people have never heard of the My proposal then is to invite the netCTBTO and may not be interested in the work of UNESCO clubs and centres to proCTBTO’s areas of expertise. vide tailored courses on the basics of nuThe long march clear non-proliferation for high schoolers.

Proliferating science

By Kyrill Burmistrov Institute of International Relations Moscow Engineering Physics Institute Moscow, Russian Federation


Education in the broadest sense reflects the steps we humans take during our entire lives to obtain knowledge. In the long march from childhood to old age we keep learning new things daily.

The CTBTO collaborates with some universities and there is a possibility to do more. The organization could create educational programmes taking into account key issues of the treaty for technical universities or other institutions of learning And that is why people should be pro- specializing in international relations, invided access to education at every point of ternational law and relevant fields. the way - to establishing an understanding of science making it accessible and popularizing it.

People should be provided access to education at every point of the way.

ake a closer look at all 17 goals of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and upon analysis the common denominator running through them is – education. CTBTO efforts to reduce nuclear dangers and make the world a safer place also underpins the SDGs and education is no less important in building awareness and support for the test ban treaty. Agenda 2030’s goals of eradicating poverty and hunger, among its targets, requires economic growth and industrialization and the use of clean energy to prevent adverse effects on the environment. New groundbreaking technologies and innovations, which drive progress are invented by people and high-quality education is needed to support the training and development of the women and men who will provide them. So by necessity education is a cornerstone of global development.

Meeting the SDGs through education

However, peace and security on the planet are also indispensable to ensuring our future and this is a task the test ban treaty can fulfil by establishing progress on the road to world free of the dangers from nuclear weapons.

Involving academics in these universities in the development of such programmes would encourage new ideas and provide unique perspectives. Moreover, local academics may encourage their students to enroll in such in new courses. Since 2012, online learning platforms have become popular providing a variety of courses on different subjects in cooperation with many universities and publishing courses involving UN bodies. The CTBTO has an opportunity to create online courses for some of these platforms. Dividing them into three levels – the first an introduction to nuclear non-proliferation issues JOHANN GOTTLIEB FICHTE (1762-1814) and arms control, the second and third an analysis of treaties and how disagreements But how can education raise public have been resolved, would meet the needs awareness about the nuclear test ban and of students at different levels. its entry into force, nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament? The CTBTO has an opportunity to become a leader in the area of promoting sciTrying to draw everyone’s attention to ence to non-scientists and the first steps in nuclear-related topics is futile. Instead I breaking the ice are represented by the CTpropose the CTBTO should focus on specif- BTO Youth Group (CYG). By raising awareic groups, students in schools, colleges and ness of CTBT-related topics we CYG memuniversities, and academics. bers can also contribute to this endeavor.

The 18th Century German philosopher Johann Gottlieb Fichte declared “a scienMost national systems of education are tist is a teacher of the human race.” And it is scientists who are instrumental in pro- complicated and specific. Neither the UN viding humanity with knowledge, making nor the CTBTO can rewrite all the textbooks in all schools of the world. it the bedrock of education.

But the UN runs a number of successful international education programmes, and I experienced one of them, run by UNESCO in my hometown Yekaterinburg when I was 14 years old and belonged to it. We learned a lot about the UN, but nothing about other The CTBTO’s global verification system organizations in the UN family, such as the policing the planet for any evidence of nu- CTBTO. CTBTO, CC BY

The contribution of science to the development of modern society cannot be underestimated. A scientific approach based on fact, logic and research demands a certain level of education to use.



Kyrill Burmistrov is a MEPhI Institute of International Relations student. Interested in history, non-proliferation and international relations, he has been writing articles since 2017. Since 2011, Burmistrov is a member of the UNESCO club in Yekaterinburg, Russia. After the CTBTO Youth Group Conference 2017 in Moscow, he became a member of the CTBTO Youth Group. He lives in Moscow, Russia.



Nuclear Free Schools is a Los Angeles (USA) based initiative promoting support for nuclear disarmament among high school students. Cristopher Cruz is one of its pioneers, eager to share how the initiative came about and help others take a similar track. This is his story.


oung people are making great strides becoming engaged with a cascade of issues threatening their future. But hardened by its technology, history, politics and secrecy, nuclear proliferation resists efforts to curb it nearly 75 years after the first nuclear explosion. Nuclear Free Schools was created as a response to the growing lack of nuclear awareness and denial. The project bridges the gap between high schoolers and young professionals. The initiative started in 2017 as a collaborative effort by our Assistant Principal and CIF participating instructor, Andrew King, classmate Lesly Tobon and me. We used our Critical Issues Forum presentation to showcase our research on nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation while providing practical steps other students could follow. Our high school, Alliance Dr. Olga Mohan High School, is in downtown Los Angeles, California and has a strong sense of community towards education and youth empowerment due to its small student population and interest in politics, both domestic and foreign.

By Cristopher Cruz First-year University Student United States

Nuclear history is a wide and deep pool of information. The goal was not to cram as much information as possible into the minds of developing teenagers, but employ a method of “productive fear” as coined by Andrew King. This was a response from observing current events in US society at the time: noth-

It began with high school students, their teacher, and an idea - how can we engage more students and promote real progress towards nuclear disarmament, especially when it seems like our politicians are doing nothing? Unanimously, we agreed that we had to begin with the youth. And not just with college students and young professionals; but with high school students who are just as capable of promoting real change. From the Nuclear Free Schools Website ing stimulates conversation better than fear. So with fear and uncertainty on their minds, our students began to ask, “is there anything we can do?” The answer was the Alliance Dr. Olga Mohan High School Nuclear Weapons Free Zone (ADOMHS – NWFZ) – yes, it’s quite a mouthful.

I am Cristopher Cruz, a college student aspiring to help others work together for our common good. I developed an interest in nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation watching science fiction movies of the 1950’s and 1960’s in my childhood as well as reading about the horrors of Nagasaki and Hiroshima. In my third year of high school I had the opportunity to travel to Nagasaki with the Critical Issues Forum (CIF) to speak about proposals for disarmament as well as promoting immediate entry into force of the CTBT. That’s when I was asked by Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of rhe CTBTO to share our Nuclear Free Schools initiative with the 2017 CTBTO Science and Technology conference. From these and other related experiences my life has forever changed and encouraged me to immerse myself in this work. I joined the CTBTO Youth Group because I see it as a responsibility to share my experiences and knowledge with others so that we can put an end to nuclear explosions and rid the planet of nuclear weapons. I try to demonstrate this responsibility through my personal blog at The Atomic Scholar and as the new administrator of Nuclear Free Schools.



Our NWFZ declaration was modeled after the Oakland and Berkeley Nuclear Weapons Free Zone acts. Several sessions crash-coursing students on the dangers of nuclear weapons and nuclear testing, were required to win support. The next step was to implement a “nuclear literacy curriculum” offering the following topics to high school students: • A Nuclear Primer – providing a historical and scientific introduction to nuclear weapons and their effects; • The CTBT and History of Nuclear Testing - an in-depth lesson about the health and environmental impact of testing and the political ramifications of continuing it; Hibakusha Stories from Hiroshima and Nagasaki – readings of testimonies from atomic bomb survivors;

Nuclear Free Schools,

INTO THE CLASSROOM Nuclear Close Calls: Terrorism, Accidents, Miscalculations - a module exploring accidents, nuclear terrorism, dangers and risks both foreign and domestic.

At the time of writing in 2019, ADOMHS has been only partially successful in introducing some of these elements. Students in US History and first year classes discuss the use of atomic bombs in Japan and third year physics students dissect nuclear fission and fusion, and explore the beneficial and detrimental uses of nuclear energy. But Nuclear Free Schools didn’t stop there. In the fall of 2017, the first ever “Youth Disarmament Conference” (YDC) was organized and held in Los Angeles, California. It was held with The Los Angeles chapter of Physicians for Social Responsibility – (PSRLA), which works against nuclear proliferation, climate change, and environmental dangers. Guest speakers included Shigeko Sasamori, a Japanese atomic bomb survivor, Daryl Kimball of the Arms Control Association and the successful event welcomed high school and university students and teachers from across southern California. Our work has been met with both interest and challenges. Outside of energetic and informative discussions between high school students sparking interest in others progress is slow.

How do we move forward? Here are To ensure the CTBT becomes internasome views: tional law and the world takes the next step towards ridding itself of nuclear weapons it must do more to engage young people. We Fatima M. (ADOMHS Class of 2020) is are not somehow superior to established concerned over the stagnant growth of experts, but who else is going to continue nuclear literacy, “[it] is limited because this work? Who else can ensure what has of the way high school curriculums [in been learned about nuclear non-proliferathe US] work.” tion, making the world safer, is sustained? This is the goal I want to serve, setting an Luis C. (ADOMHS Class of 2020), after example not just for my peers, friends and a Critical Issues Forum event observed family, but for those who will come after that his fellow programme participants me. Young minds crave information and were the only young individuals conknowledge and what better way than procerned about the nuclear issue. Outside viding us a template to follow. of the keynote speakers—people were on the older side. “It’s disheartening to see that many young persons are not as active when it comes to this topic. There’s a disparity in the age gap of people who are actively reading and talking about this [topic.]” So what’s to be done to close the gap? Co-founder and current NFS leader, Andrew King, argues that “the issue is that [people] talk about [this topic] in grandiose terms as opposed to [taking small] steps or bullet points that other people could follow.” Edgar L. and Yeslie B. (both class of 2019) concur that the educational aspect of the club (NFS) needs to be able to change the way people think about nuclear weapons and the threat overlaps with concerns about climate change. Former CIF participant and ADOMHS classmate, Kimberly Nunez, now studying at Georgetown University expresses dismay over its lack of non-proliferation initiatives while praising the work of NFS for its potential to become a national grassroots campaign that high schools (and colleges) around the country can participate in.



Cristopher Cruz Colorado is in first-year college in the US where is studying towards obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Global Studies/International Relations. He stresses the important role of young people to help rid the world of nuclear dangers and currently helps administrate the Nuclear Free Schools project and runs a personal blog at The Atomic Scholar.


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By Shereen Nanish Freelance journalist, writer and translator Amman, Jordan


hile the main mission of the CTBTO is to ban nuclear explosions, the scientific data provided by 300 sensors in its global monitoring system is also being used for civil and scientific purposes, including climate studies. The impact of climate change, such as the calving of icebergs and insights gained from radiation data collected from the atmosphere, are among the many contributions the CTBTO International Monitoring System (IMS) is making to climate science. In a rapidly changing physical world the CTBTO system is an indispensable source of knowledge about the dynamics of its moving parts.

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The CTBTO International Data Center (IDC) provides seismic and hydroacoustic monitoring data. Although the test ban treaty has yet to enter into force, its monitors - 337 when the system is complete actively take the planet’s pulse at all times. One of them, for instance, is Auxiliary Seismic AS056 located in Tel-Alasfar, in my home country, Jordan. It may sound counter-intuitive but data from CTBTO IMS hydroacoustic facilities detecting sounds underwater are contributing to urgent research about the climate. Such data are being studied for their signif-

icance to direct or indirect measurement of ocean temperature variations and wave action of major storms to better understand how the climate is being disrupted. Hydroacoustic technology is also effective in providing tsunami early warning such as in 2010 off the west coast of Sumatra in Indonesia.

How does the CTBTO collect data?

In addition to its rate of radioactive decay, 7Be is removed from the atmosphere by several mechanisms; it could be transported by winds and redistributed vertically by gravitational sedimentation and or ultimately removed by wet and dry deposition in the lower troposphere. Radionuclides stations collect data about 7Be which transports a good indicator of stratosphere-troposphere exchange and can be used to monitor its intensity.

In addition, the monitoring system also detects other natural phenomena such My interest in climate change earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides and av- and why it is in yours alanches. Apart from my interest as a young jourThe atmosphere that we live in closest to nalist in environmental issues, I believe the surface of the earth is called the trop- that learning about climate change and adosphere. Above it is the stratosphere con- vocating for its mitigation should be part of taining different concentrations of gases everyone’s interests. and sometimes radioactive residues. IMS Although the issue needs the collaboradionuclide facilities provide data that can be extracted ton help in climate stud- ration of policy and decision makers at a global level, our collective and individual ies. efforts can make a real difference because This can be achieved measuring the our lives and our impact on this world are beryllium that exists in the air we breathe marked by the decisions we make, both big as a tracer. Beryllium-7 is one of the sam- and small. We all should work to avoid the pled particle-bound natural radionuclides, consequences of climate change. which means it attaches to aerosol partiI’ve witnessed some of the devastating cles. consequences of climate change personal-



2018-2019 Peace and Cooperation and CTBTO Global Scholar Art Campaign



ly. In October 2018, 20 people were swept to their death by a flash flood in, Jordan, in an area close to the Dead Sea. Most of them were children who went to a school near my house.

Jordan is a pioneer in developing a national climate change policy and 88 per cent of Jordanians consider climate change a serious problem for their country, according to the 2009 report of the Arab Forum for Environment and DevelMany blamed poor area infrastruc- opment. ture and doubted that such an extreme weather event could be attributed to cli- CTBTO & Climate Tracker? mate change, especially that it had only In 2017, I enrolled in the Jordan Media rained for around 15 minutes, despite it being stormy. However, due to the unsta- Institute (JMI) for a master’s in journalism ble weather conditions in the following month, heavy rain created more flash Rural areas in Jordan flooding which killed another 12 people and injured 29. According to Jordan’s Third National Communication on Climate Change submitted to The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), rural areas in Jordan are most likely to be affected by the consequences of climate change; agricultural productivity could be reduced and water scarcity makes it even harder for farmers to cope with these changes. Moreover, the conditions of coastal areas like, Aqaba will be subjected to rising sea levels and rainfall - factors both connected to climate change.

are most likely to be affected by the consequences of climate change.

ing mentorship, fellowships, conference opportunities and other support. When Lassina Zerbo, Executive Secretary of the CTBTO visited JMI and I heard him talk about the role of youth in supporting the treaty and ensuring a better world and environment for all, I realized that contributing to these two organizations were steps I could take to protect the planet. Shereen Nanish is a freelance journalist, writer, content creator and translator. Currently enrolled in a Master's degree programme in journalism and new media at the Jordan Media Institute, she has a Bachelor's degree in English Language and Linguistics from the Jordan University of Science and Technology.



he pictures on this page are among 1,000 entries received from young people in the Peace and Cooperation School Award 2019: “For a safer world – let’s join forces with the CTBTO.”

Bulgaria, Cameroon, China (Hong Kong), Cyprus, Colombia, Croatia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Iran, Kenya, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Mexico, Montenegro, Namibia, New Zealand, Peru, Russian Federation, Seychelles Islands, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

There will be 12 winners from three categories who will receive their awards at a ceremony during the CTBTO Science and Technology Conference 24 – 28 June 2019 in Vienna. Judging took place in Madrid in Spain in April. Artwork was entered in the contest by An exhibition of the artwork will be on young artists, ranging in age from five to 18 display during the CTBTO Science and years old, from 25 countries: Austria, Azer- Technology Conference. baijan, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina,


and joined the Climate Tracker organization to draw attention to environmental issues through my work.

Peace and Cooperation is a Spanish non-governmental organization founded in 1982 by peace activist and writer Joaquin Antuña.

Climate Tracker connects young journalists globally who are passionate about raising awareness of climate issues, offerBY JASMINA NOŽIĆ, EDITA ŽDRALE, LAJLA KUDOVIĆ, DANIS BAKOŠ, ADNA ĆOSIĆ, RIZAH MUSTAFIĆ, MELIKA DŽAJIĆ NEJRA BOLOBAN, ENISA NUHIĆ, AGES 16-17 YEARS (BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA)





It is a promoter of universal education among the most vulnerable, and promotes development assistance and human rights. Its worldwide School Award initiative recognises students, teachers, and schools that work towards the ideals of peace, multicultural relations and diversity.


The CTBTO Youth Group (CYG) invites you to join us in supporting our efforts to ensure the treaty outlawing nuclear weapons testing becomes global law. Today’s nuclear dangers will be our inheritance tomorrow unless steps are taken to curb them. The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) puts a brake on nuclear proliferation that urgently needs to be applied. Nearly every country supports it and it has built a the global system monitoring the planet for any sign of a nuclear explosion. Yet 23 years after its introduction the treaty still needs the assent of eight countries to enter into force. The Youth Group and its newsroom project provide channels for the voices of its members to raise awareness about the CTBT, addressing a matter of life and death about which we are mostly tongue-tied – the threat of nuclear weapons. This magazine is part of the dialogue.


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