Nuclear Proliferation: History and Present Problems

Machiavelli Center for Cold War Studies, Italy Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Germany CSDC, University of Florence, Italy International Network of Engineers and Scientists International Peace Bureau
04.10.2007 - 05.10.2007
Wenkel, Christian

Nuclear proliferation is one of the key challenges to the stability of the contemporary international system, and the current non-proliferation regime seems increasingly unable to meet the expectations of its designers. Since the signature of the Non Proliferation Treaty in 1968,
nuclear powers have barely fulfilled their commitments to reduce their atomic arsenals, while the number of non-nuclear countries that have crossed the threshold status and are now regarded as full-fledged atomic powers has increased and threatens to keep growing.
We firmly believe that a deeper understanding of the political and psychological roots of nuclear proliferation can only be achieved through a strong interdisciplinary effort, combining the skills and expertise of scholars from highly different fields. Consistent and reliable results in the field of non-proliferation can be reached only with the contribution
and collaboration of specialists from many disciplines - such as history of science, political science, international history, sociology, and economics. We hope this workshop will provide a useful contribution in this direction.
Key contemporary issues will be analysed during the workshop, such as the dual use of nuclear technology and the costs of nuclear weapons programs, the regional dimensions of contemporary proliferation (namely the Pacific
Region and the Middle East) and the current disarmament programs (ranging from US and Russian disarmament policies to the ambiguities of Franco-British nuclear cooperation within the EU).

Program Committee:
Marilena Gala (CIMA, University of Rome-3)
Matteo Gerlini (CIMA, University of Florence)
Leopoldo Nuti (CIMA, University of Rome-3)
Angelo Baracca (CSDC, University of Florence)
Reiner Braun (INES)
Cristiano Franceschini (IPB-Italia, Italy)
Albert Presas i Puig (MPIWG, Berlin)
Juergen Renn (MPIWG, Berlin)


Conference Program

October 4
Aula Magna of the Rectorate, San Marco 4
10.00 a.m. Opening remarks and welcome
Augusto Marinelli, Rector, University of Florence
Angelo Baracca, Department of Physics, University of Florence
Ennio Di Nolfo, Chairman of CIMA, University of Florence
Riccardo Nencini, Chairman, Regional Council of Tuscany
Matteo Renzi, President, Province of Florence

11.00 a.m. Introductions
Jürgen Renn, MPIWG, Germany
"Knowledge of Nuclear Technology and the Role of Scientists"
Jack Steinberger, Nobel Prize in Physics, Switzerland
"The Nuclear Threat: The Only Solution Is Global Nuclear Disarmament, the Necessary Prerequisite Is US Willingness to Lead the Way"
David Krieger, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, USA
"Nuclear Dangers and Challenges to a New Nuclear Policy"

12.30 Lunch
14.30 Panel 1: Nuclear Technologies and Their Costs
Chair: Reiner Braun, INES, Germany
Alla Yaroshinskaya, Alternative Nobel Laureate, Russia
"From Nucleus to Nuclear Targeting and Proliferation"
Wolfgang Liebert, Darmstadt University, Germany
"The Janus Face of Nuclear Technology"
William Burr, National Security Archive, USA
"The Costs of the American Nuclear Program"

16.00 Coffee Break
16.30 Panel 2: Regions of Nuclear Proliferation
Chair: Marilena Gala, CIMA, Italy
Herbert Wulf, International Center for Conversion, Germany
"The Challenges to End North Korea's Nuclear Program"
Avner Cohen, University of Maryland, USA
"Israel as a Reluctant Proliferator"
Mohamed Kadry Said, Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, Egypt
"Nuclear Proliferation in the Greater Middle East: Current Developments and Future Prospects"

Regional Council, Palazzo Panciatichi, Via Cavour
19.30 Cocktail dinner with the Chairman of the Tuscan Regional Council

Dinner speech
Rainer Karlsch, MPIWG, Germany
"The German Nuclear Weapons Program during WWII"

October 5
School of Political Sciences, Via delle Pandette 21
9.00 a.m. Panel 3: Current Nuclear Problems
Chair: Leopoldo Nuti, CIMA, Italy
Beatrice Heuser, Bundeswehr University, Germany
"The British and French Nuclear Postures: Blair and Chirac's Bequests"
David Holloway, Center for International Security and Cooperation, USA
"Soviet nuclear policies from Stalin to Gorbachev"
Svetlana Savranskaya, National Security Archive, USA
"Soviet and Russian Nuclear Disarmament Policies from Gorbachev to Putin"
Pavel Podvig, Stanford University, USA
"Missile Defence Issues in US-Russian Relations"

10.30 Coffee Break
11.00 Panel 4: Disarmament and Non-Proliferation Policies
Chair: Vojtech Mastny, Parallel History Project, Zurich
Eric Terzuolo, University of Rome-3, Italy
"NATO and Weapons of Mass Destruction"
Hans Kristensen, Federation of American Scientists, USA
"US Nuclear Weapons in Europe after the Cold War"
Joseph Cirincione, Center for American Progress, USA
"Hope for the Future: The Drive for a New Non Proliferation Consensus"

12.30 Lunch

14.30 Concluding lecture
John Finney, Pugwash, United Kingdom
"In the tradition of Joseph Rotblat: Raising Public and Political
Awareness of Nuclear Weapons Issues"

The Machiavelli Center for Cold War Studies (CIMA) is an inter-university network linking the activities of a number of Cold War historians based at the Universities of Florence, Roma Tre, Padua, Pavia, Perugia, and Urbino. It is perhaps the most important academic institution for international studies in Italy and certainly the core of a large network
of international academic contacts.

The International Network of Engineers and Scientist (INES) is an independent no-profit organisation concerned about the impact of science and technology on society. INES works mainly through projects, initiated by members or by collaborative organisations. Currently the most visible
projects are the Network against nuclear proliferation INESAP and the ethics network INESPE. INES is affiliated with the United Nations and with UNESCO as a non-governmental organisation.

The Max Planck Institute for the History of Science (MPIWG) in Berlin is one of 80 research institutes in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities administered by the Max Planck Society. The MPIWG is involved in collaborations with scientists, historians of art and
architecture, jurists, archaeologists, and museum curators. The Institute also promotes the application of new computer technologies to research in the humanities.

The International Peace Bureau (IPB) was founded as a result of the third Universal Peace Congress in Rome, 1891, with Fredrik Bajer one of its principal founders and its first president. The present aim of the International Peace Bureau is «to serve the cause of peace by the promotion of international cooperation and non-violent solution of
international conflicts».

The Interdepartmental Center for the Study of Complex Dynamics (CSDC) collects into a single framework the numerous research group working on complexity within the University of Florence. Its goal is to facilitate knowledge transfer and formation in the field, namely by developing
interdisciplinary collaboration among researchers.

The conference has been organized with the support of the Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze.


Matteo Gerlini

Nuclear Proliferation: History and Present Problems, 04.10.2007 – 05.10.2007 Florence, in: H-Soz-Kult, 19.08.2007, <>.
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