Friday, November 20, 2009

Ambassador Max Kampelman on Nuclear Disarmament

Ambassador Max Kampelman, the Democrat who became President Ronald Reagan’s arms control negotiator and who is argued to have initiated the new political momentum behind nuclear disarmament, addressed faculty and students at the Elliott School of International Affairs on November 9, 2009. Ambassador Kampelman recommended research and policy engagement by institutions of higher education to respond to the dangers posed by nuclear weapons. Observing that “political scientists ought to know how to get things done,” he contended that academic research should include questions of how policy might shape political outcomes. He suggested additional research focused on how to build consensus domestically and globally around how the world “ought” to be and the steps necessary to move in that direction. He also suggested research into how the historic experience of arms control could inform policy to respond to today’s challenges. Noting an absence of institutional and coordinative mechanisms for resolving policy uncertainty related to nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament, Ambassador Kampelman emphasized the value convening and policy engagement to bridge different perspectives on the challenge of nuclear disarmament, as well as new research on how to advance toward this increasingly important policy objective. Watch the video of Ambassador Kampelman’s public remarks here.

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