Multilateral Disarmament

Multilateral Disarmament

What’s next for nuclear arms control and disarmament?

BASIC works with governments, academics, think tanks and journalists to build momentum behind innovative, practical steps towards nuclear arms control and disarmament. Using our tried and tested methodology around dialogue and active listening, we work collaboratively with states to help them identify and overcome the barriers to multilateral disarmament. We see this as a critical principled and pragmatic enterprise that has to absorb competing political and social objectives at national and international level.

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The Programme’s Outline

BASIC works in this policy area at the national and international levels. In 2017, BASIC published Meaningful Multilateralism, comprising 30 actionable proposals on nuclear disarmament and arms control for the UK Government. In the approach to the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference in 2020, BASIC has sought to identify diplomatic opportunities for states to more clearly outline the circumstances under which they would contemplate the use of nuclear weapons, through the issuance of ‘negative security assurances.’
We are grateful for the generous support of the  Edith M Ellis 1985 Charitable Trust, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, Global Affairs Canada, the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, the Network for Social Change, the Nuclear Threat Initiative, the Polden-Puckham Charitable Foundation, the United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and all of our donors who wish to remain anonymous.

Analysis and Publications for this Programme

Advancing dialogue on arms control and disarmament lies at the heart of what BASIC does. We provide ongoing coverage of developments in the security, diplomatic and political spheres to build up a clearer picture of the opportunities for progress.

Read our content below

Swedish Foreign Minister hosts ministerial meeting for Stepping Stones approach

On Tuesday, 11 June, Foreign Ministers from 15 countries meet in Stockholm to discuss how to make progress on nuclear disarmament. The impetus for this meeting is the Swedish ‘Stepping Stones’ implementation approach, presented in April at the United Nations in order to revive the blocked disarmament pathway in the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT)

Report: Stepping Stones to Disarmament – Making Progress in a Polarised International Climate

The Stepping Stones Approach seeks to engage all members of the international community in a cooperative and inclusive process that nudges the nuclear possessor states away from arms racing dynamics and in a more positive direction, with the intention of reducing the salience of nuclear weapons in postures, achieving incremental disarmament and progressively building up the capacity for further steps.

Report: Reporting on Nuclear Disarmament – Success and Failure in 25 Years of Disarmament Diplomacy

Nuclear disarmament has fallen off the public agenda. Media attention is sporadic and reactive, focusing on short-term trends like summits with North Korea or sanctions on Iran. But the longer-term process of global disarmament rarely features in the news cycle and where there is reference it is treated with disdain as unrealistic. This has serious costs to public engagement and democratic accountability.

Active Programmes

BASIC believes in making progress on nuclear disarmament, arms control, and non-proliferation through multiple complementary approaches. We continuously develop our programmes – streams of research – through sustained engagement with a wide range of stakeholders, collectively searching for the art of the possible.

Our current programmes are listed below. View the current programmes page by clicking here.

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