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Nuclear Security Education

Nuclear Security Education

Academics have a vital role to play in strengthening nuclear security culture, through educating the next generation of scientists, engineers and policy makers that go on to work in industry, the regulator and government. However, until recently there existed just a handful of academic programmes in this area worldwide, with a study by the World Institute for Nuclear Security identifying an education and training gap of more than 100,000 people per year.

CSSS has sought to bridge this gap by engaging key universities in nuclear security education both directly and through the International Nuclear Security Education Network (INSEN). In January 2012 the Centre for Science and Security Studies (CSSS) completed the world’s first professional development course in nuclear security education, which was attended by 13 university faculty members from nine countries. 

Since then, CSSS has successfully organised a number of international workshops and courses in nuclear security. Our work in this area has been supported by a number of sources including the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the US State Department’s Partnership for Nuclear Security (PNS) and the UK government’s Global Threat Reduction Programme (GTRP).

International Nuclear Security Education Network (INSEN)

CSSS staff members have been actively involved in the International Nuclear Security Education Network (INSEN) since its inception in 2010. Dr Christopher Hobbs served as Vice-Chair and then Network Chair from 2013-2015. INSEN is an international partnership between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), universities, research institutes and relevant nuclear stakeholders, focused on supporting the development of educational courses in nuclear security. Network activities include the collaborative development of teaching materials, the provision of professional development opportunities and broader outreach activities. For more information on INSEN activities and achievements during the five years of the Network’s operation please see an article by Dr Christopher Hobbs in 1540 Compass.

Professional Development Courses (PDCs)

In partnership with INSEN CSSS launched in 2010 the world’s first professional development course (PDC) in nuclear security education. Adopting a train-the-trainer approach this two-week programme combined pedagogy with nuclear security topics in order to equip future nuclear security educators with the tools they need to develop tailored courses. From 2010 to 2013 a total of six nuclear security education PDCs were run at KCL, attended by over 100 academics from 30 institutes in 15 different countries. From 2014 to 2016 CSSS partnered with key universities in Sub-Saharan Africa, South East Asia and the Middle East and North Africa, to launch eight locally focused programmes, delivered in country, to support the development of regional and national nuclear security courses. PDCs have been developed in the following subject areas: insider threats, preventative and protective measures; nuclear security culture; nuclear regulation; nuclear forensics and nuclear material accounting and control (NMAC). A summary of CSSS activities carried out in the area of nuclear security education can be found in a paper prepared by Dr Christopher Hobbs, Luca Lentini and Dr Matthew Moran, for the IAEA 2016 Nuclear Security Conference.


Additional information on past and future PDCs can be found here.

For more information contact: Dr Christopher Hobbs, Dr Sarah TzinierisDr Zenobia Homan or Dr Matthew Moran


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