International Cooperation on WMD Nonproliferation

Edited by Jeffrey W. Knopf

Traces how countries are building new forms of cooperation to address dangers posed by weapons proliferation


"This book addresses a distinct need in the WMD community—while there is ample literature on the major arms control treaties, these nonproliferation activities represent a very real and tangible program that needs to be better understood and examined. . . I would recommend it to anyone who works in the arms control community or who is seeking a better understanding of how the international community addresses WMD proliferation challenges."
—Albert Mauroni, H-Net


International efforts to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction (WMD)—including nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons—rest upon foundations provided by global treaties such as the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). Over time, however, states have created a number of other mechanisms for organizing international cooperation to promote nonproliferation. Examples range from regional efforts to various worldwide export-control regimes and nuclear security summit meetings initiated by U.S. president Barack Obama. Many of these additional nonproliferation arrangements are less formal and have fewer members than the global treaties.

International Cooperation on WMD Nonproliferation calls attention to the emergence of international cooperation beyond the core global nonproliferation treaties. The contributors examine why these other cooperative nonproliferation mechanisms have emerged, assess their effectiveness, and ask how well the different pieces of the global nonproliferation regime complex fit together. Collectively, the essayists show that states have added new forms of international cooperation to combat WMD proliferation for multiple reasons, including the need to address new problems and the entrepreneurial activities of key state leaders. Despite the complications created by the existence of so many different cooperative arrangements, this collection shows the world is witnessing a process of building cooperation that is leading to greater levels of activity in support of norms against WMD and terrorism.

Studies in Security and International Affairs

Page count: 344
4 diagrams, 6 tables
Trim size: 6 x 9


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Jeffrey W. Knopf is a professor and program chair of Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.