The National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) at the University of Nebraska, together with a group of select University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) students, recently participated in a conference hosted by the U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) to advance critical international conversations on the use of nuclear weapons. The Project on Nuclear Issues (PONI) Conference is the capstone event for the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS). Held March 4, 2015, the event provided a forum for rising experts in the field to advance the debate on nuclear issues by presenting insights from their independent research and their professional experiences. The University of Nebraska, whose faculty have significant expertise in relevant areas such as nuclear detection and defense against weapons of mass destruction, was well-positioned to contribute at the conference. In attendance were retired Lt Gen Bob Hinson, NSRI Executive Director as well as Paul McGuire, Alex Resnick, Kevin Adler, James Garza and Shannon Costello, all students at UNL.
“The conference fielded rich discussions on some of the world’s greatest challenges affecting nuclear weapons strategy, policy and science. We were proud to have several University of Nebraska students to represent the next generation, engaging on these issues,” said Lt Gen Hinson.
By serving as a hub of knowledge transfer and debate, PONI seeks to develop the next generation of nuclear experts and stimulate creative yet practical thinking on how to manage benefits and risks associated with nuclear weapons.
James Garza, a Political Science Research Assistant at UNL stated “This was my second time attending the PONI Capstone Conference and it’s always an enlightening and informative experience. What I took away from the conference was the way in which young professionals studying nuclear issues are able to present to such an experienced audience. The ideas shared were extremely interesting and it is refreshing to see the possibilities and opportunities young people such as myself and professionals have in the field of Nuclear Issues and Security.”
Founded in 2012, the National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) at the University of Nebraska is the only University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) in the country dedicated to delivering solutions for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) to U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) and across other federal agencies. NSRI provides research and development for the U.S. Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, and other governmental agencies in multiple mission-critical competency areas — including development of medical countermeasures to WMD; nuclear detection and forensics; consequence management; chemical and biological weapons detection; and space, cyber, and telecom law. Learn more at nsri.nebraska.edu