Deterrence Perspectives in the 21st Century

The aim of this project is to provide a space to explore creative/disruptive ideas on perspectives concerning deterrence, to encourage ‘responsible disruption’ in the nuclear field.

Concerns about transatlantic security are high following the US 2018 Nuclear Posture Review and its interpretation of the Russian doctrine, the demise of the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), the uncertainty surrounding the potential extension of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), and Russian deployment of Avangard hypersonic, nuclear-capable missile systems.

Emerging technologies, especially quantum technologies, jeopardize the reliability of existing encryption measures. Some of the most sophisticated cyber attacks are already assisted by artificial intelligence. The possibility that nuclear weapons systems can be interfered with both during conflict and peacetime by these technologies, without the knowledge of the possessor state, raises questions on the reliability and integrity of these systems, with implications for military decision-making, particularly to deterrence policy.

These issues and more indicate the changes in the security landscape that have a bearing on the future of nuclear deterrence.

This project is supported by the Hiroshima Prefecture and Government of Ireland.