Russia Next Generation Working Group

Informing and influencing the next steps in U.S.-Russia arms control

The Russia Working Group, co-chaired by James Acton and Michael Gerson, consisted of 14 young academics and analysts with professional experience in arms control and other nuclear issues. It studied the next steps in U.S.-Russia nuclear arms control and developed a report to inform the policy discourse and, ultimately, help shape the approach of both governments towards future arms control negotiations. The group explored policy and technical issues and offered recommendations for a way forward in both areas.

The group considered a wide variety of issues relevant to future US-Russia arms control, including strategic and nonstrategic nuclear weapons; non-deployed warheads; ballistic missile defense; Prompt Global Strike; verification; the effect of arms control on strategic stability; the US-Russia relationship and the non-proliferation regime; as well as the bureaucratic and domestic political obstacles to a new agreement on both sides.

The goal of the working group was to agree upon a consensus final report in which “all participants endorse its general policy thrust and judgments, though not necessarily every finding and recommendation.” The group’s preliminary findings were presented to senior US military officers at PONI’s annual capstone conference at US Strategic Command. Following the completion of the final report in February 2011, high-level US government officials were briefed on the group’s conclusions and recommendations. The report’s findings were also shared with other audiences in the US and Russia. All members participated in a personal capacity, rather than as an official representative of his/her employer.


James Acton
Michael Gerson


Alexandra Bell
Elbridge Colby
Jeffrey Fields
Michael Horowitz
Whitney Raas
Caroline Reilly
Matthew Rojansky
Benjamin Rusek
Michelle Smith
J. Seth Snider
Andrew Walter
John Warden