C. Gariazzo, “Determining the Benefits of Nuclear Material and Arms Control on Nuclear Security”, 55th Annual Meeting of the Institute of Nuclear Materials Management, Atlanta, Georgia, 20-14 July 2014.
Nations that enter into a nuclear material or arms control agreement do so in an effort to enhance or create trust to mitigate a perceived need to use nuclear assets against another state and to ensure the security of nuclear material against threats. Correspondingly, researchers at the Nuclear Security and Science Institute (NSSPI) at Texas A&M University (TAMU) are investigating the potential creation of bilateral comprehensive nuclear material and arms control regimes between states that exhibit various characteristics of a nuclearly-advanced state as a means to enhance global nuclear security. A central tenet of this consideration is establishing a fragile balance that must be exhibited by both states through maximizing transparency of that state’s actions and yet maximizing opacity of that state’s capabilities and knowledge. Furthermore, the delicate balance achieved in this potential bilateral accord must positively affect three settled-upon facets: trust (the partner state’s abilities to believe in the intentions of the other partner state’s actions and intent), confidence (the partner states’ capabilities to believe in each other’s technical capabilities), and integrity (the international community’s willingness to believe in the regime). Ultimately, NSSPI researchers are determining the ideal (maximized) levels of trust, confidence, and integrity that can be attained within a bilateral material and arms control regime in order to best enhance global nuclear security. This paper conveys the work put forth in creating a game tree model of a hypothetical bilateral regime and how various actions by actors can lead to varying levels of trust, confidence and integrity. This work is part of a larger effort being conducted at TAMU-NSSPI in developing a systematic approach to evaluate comprehensive material and arms control agreements as an engagement tool to non-NPT nuclear weapon states.