Nation-states collaborate to achieve common goals. In the interest of advancing nuclear security globally, states have previously formed bilateral partnerships that allow two states to cooperate in such germane areas of the nuclear industry such as safeguarding nuclear material, securing nuclear weapons, and advancing peaceful uses of nuclear technologies. Specifically, some states collaborate in establishing state-level strategies on nuclear security measures in order to protect against possible non-state adversaries (e.g., the Cooperative Threat Reduction and Material Protection, Control, and Accounting Programs between the Russian Federation and the United States). Commonly, doubts begin to emerge as to the partner states– gains (or losses) from cooperation. In an attempt to quantify these utilities, a methodology has been developed within this work that uses game theoretic models to measure the value of cooperation. Moreover, in certain bilateral regimes, the opportunity for influence arises due to a nascent asymmetry between the partners. In this light, it is hoped that the developed methodology can predict circumstances under which one state might influence another in securing the latter’s nuclear assets against possible non-state actors by virtue of a potential collective benefit in a bilateral cooperative nuclear security regime. The methodology computes utilities of three game theoretic models – using two non-cooperative approaches and one cooperative approach. Determining the existence and magnitude between uncorrelated and correlates strategies provided the opportunity to study various cooperative strategies between states. The bargaining solutions of the regime were then used to evaluate utilities of each cooperative strategy and then presented for discussion. This process was applied to four case studies exhibiting a temporal progression of cooperation between the Russian Federation (formerly the Soviet Union) and the United States and a fifth case study assessing cooperation between modern-day Pakistan and the United States. A result of applying the methodology to the former bilateral regime illustrated the use of nuclear insecurity as a potentially profitable commodity (a stated concern in nuclear deterrence and nonproliferation scholars). In sum, it is hoped that this methodology will help assist future decision makers or analysts in quantifying the value of state-level cooperation for nuclear security.
- C. Gariazzo, "A Game Theoretic Model of Mutual Benefits of Bilateral Nuclear Security Regimes", Ph.D. Dissertation, Nuclear Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX (2017).