The Texas A&M Institute of Nuclear Materials Management (INMM) Student Chapter, with guidance and support from the INMM International Safeguards Technical Division and the Southwest Regional Chapter, hosted a Safeguards and Organizational Culture Workshop on April 26-27, 2016 on the Texas A&M University campus. The organizing director for the workshop was NSSPI student Meyappan Subbiah, and the planning committee included Texas A&M INMM Student Chapter members, Kerrie Ford, Jarrod Allred, Manit Shah, Jose Trevino, Timothy Jacomb-Hood, and Logan Scott, with TEES Nuclear Security Science and Policy Institute (NSSPI) Director Dr. Sunil Chirayath and NSSPI Research Engineer Mr. Claudio Gariazzo acting as the advisers.
Safeguards culture is a unique and dynamic concept that has neither been firmly defined nor uniformly implemented. In bringing together the foremost experts in the field of safeguards, the workshop was intended to further the concept of safeguards culture and strengthen global safeguards efforts as a whole. Experts from different backgrounds and areas of expertise who work in safeguards and related fields gathered together to explore and define the term “safeguards culture,” to assess the degree to which safeguards can be incorporated into the culture of an organization, and to identify research areas that need additional focus.
The sessions for the workshop were chaired by Gariazzo and Mr. Steven Mladineo, a senior nonproliferation advisor at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and included presentations by various experts from academia, national laboratories, regulatory bodies, and international organizations. Group discussions followed the presentations and focused on exploring the concept of safeguards culture, discussing lessons learned from safety and security cultures to be applied in safeguards culture, identifying motives and incentives to promote safeguards culture in a facility or regulatory regime, examining best practices for cultivating safeguards culture within organizations and member states, and proposing metrics to gauge culture progress. Participants are working to summarize the conclusions of the workshop in papers to be presented at the 57th INMM Annual Meeting in Atlanta in July and the 38th European Safeguards Research and Development Association (ESARDA) Annual Meeting in Luxembourg in May.