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Disarmament & Strategic Stability

UK-China next generation dialogue

Since 2013, with generous support from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, CSSS has convened a Next Generation Nuclear Dialogue between British and Chinese nuclear researchers.  The project’s focus has been to create and institutionalise a dialogue between, and amongst, young British and Chinese researchers in the field of nuclear arms control and strategic stability. The project has run for three cycles of meetings in China and the UK. The first two cycles were held in partnership with Renmin University of China. The Chinese leg of this year’s dialogue was held at the National University of Defense Technology (NUDT) in Changsha.

The project has intended to contribute to stability in UK-Chinese relations by correcting areas of misperception in the field of nuclear weapons and promote networks between young professionals on both sides. Key focuses of the six workshops have been the meaning of “minimum deterrence”, the role of small nuclear powers in arms control, and discussion of various challenges to strategic stability including ballistic missile defence, advanced conventional weapons and other related issues.

The workshops have brought together practitioners, think-tankers and academics from the UK and China, assisted by more senior mentors, to work towards a jointly-agreed document setting out agreed understandings and identifying areas for further research. Participants are asked – in a personal capacity – to put their name to the joint document at the end of the yearlong dialogue cycle. While not intended to be comprehensive, the document reflects those areas in which agreement was possible or in which common themes emerged, as well as outlining areas for potential further research.

The CSSS would like to thank the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for its support of this project, Renmin University of China for hosting the first two China workshops – particularly Dr Wu Riqiang – and CNSSS at NUDT for hosting the third China workshop. Grateful thanks are also due to David Jarvis, Professor Li Bin, and Ambassador Li Changhe for their guidance throughout.

For further information about the Dialogue project, please contact Dr Daniel Salisbury.

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