Virtual Library

Our virtual library is an online repository of all of the reports, papers, and briefings that IST has produced, as well as works that have influenced our thinking.

Submit your Content

Memo

Roadmap to Potential Prohibition of Ransomware Payments

Ransomware Task Force Co-Chairs

viewpdf

Reports

Unlocking U.S. Technological Competitiveness: Evaluating Initial Solutions to Public-Private Misalignments

Ben Purser, Pavneet Singh

viewpdf

Reports

Public Private Partnerships to Combat Ransomware: An inquiry into three case studies and best practices

Elizabeth Vish, Georgeanela Flores Bustamante

viewpdf

Reports

Unlocking U.S. Technological Competitiveness: Public-Private Misalignments in Biotechnology, Energy, and Quantum Sectors

Ben Purser, Pavneet Singh

viewpdf

Reports

Effects of Electromagnetic Pulses on Communication Infrastructure: An IST Primer

viewpdf

Reports

How Does Access Impact Risk? Assessing AI Foundation Model Risk Along a Gradient of Access

Zoë Brammer, along with contributors from the AI Foundation Model Access Working Group

viewpdf

Fact Sheet

DOD and SBA Launch the Small Business Investment Company Critical Technology (SBICCT) Initiative

Strategic Balancing Initiative

viewpdf

Contribute to our Library!

We also welcome additional suggestions from readers, and will consider adding further resources as so much of our work has come through crowd-sourced collaboration already. If, for any chance you are an author whose work is listed here and you do not wish it to be listed in our repository, please, let us know.

SUBMIT CONTENT

NC3 in a Multipolar Nuclear World: Big Structures and Large Processes

Paul Bracken

SUMMARY

In this essay, Paul Bracken analyzes the big structures and large processes of nuclear multipolarity. A framework for analyzing this global system is developed, one made up of national command and control plus the “system dynamics” of their interlinked behavior. The paper underscores how advanced technologies — cyberwar, drones, and anti-satellite weapons (ASAT) — affects NC3. The structures include the national command and control of at least eighteen countries, to include nine nuclear weapon states, “shared” weapons in NATO, missile defense, and key intelligence nodes in select countries. Processes include the delegated flow of launch authority, innovation, and digitization in many forms.

The paper specifically assesses the two big structures that are forming in Europe and Asia. NATO is attempting to modernize its nuclear deterrent for the new realities of European security. In Asia, a pentapolar structure of major powers (United States, Russia, China, India, and Japan) has growing nuclear interactions: in missile defense, cyber, space, and in upsetting the U.S.–Russia strategic balance. The critical importance of information transfer for bolstering a coalition member’s ability to target its nuclear forces is analyzed as an example of the “new” dynamics of multipolarity.

This paper is accompanied by a Fourth Leg podcast: Grand Tactics and The Thin Skin of Civilization.

download pdf