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The Australian National University

Nuclear Policy and Security

This course will provide you with a comprehensive introduction to nuclear policy, an overview of the basics of nuclear science and weapons, the global landscape of capabilities and doctrines, and persistent concerns about proliferation. It covers the Nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty and challenges relating to North Korea and Iran in detail, as well as the recent 2016 Nuclear Security Summit and South Australia’s Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission.

A highlight is a visit to the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation and Australia’s advanced nuclear research reactor at Lucas Heights. You will study the evolution of the role of nuclear weapons in security and foreign policy, Australia’s place in the international nuclear order, and the security dimensions of the debate around peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

Course Scope and Content

This course will address the following issues:

  • The basics of nuclear science and nuclear weapons
  • The global landscape of nuclear capabilities anddoctrines, and how it affects Australia’s interests,including in relation to US extended deterrence
  • The development of frameworks to restrain orreverse the spread of nuclear weapons andmanage peaceful uses of nuclear energy
  • Concerns about nuclear weapons and terrorism
  • The 2016 Nuclear Security Summit
  • The non-proliferation regime, the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and challenges relatingto North Korea and Iran
  • Australia’s domestic nuclear policy architecture,including around uranium exports and safeguards
  • Peaceful uses of nuclear technology and the futureof the nuclear debate in Australia, including in lightof the South Australian Royal Commission
  • Australian scientific research and niche.


Course Approach

Speakers will be drawn from academia, government agencies and think tanks. They will have significant expertise and practical experience in the development and implementation of nuclear policy.

The program will identify, through interactive discussion, key issues as well as policy challenges and options facing the participants and their agencies. A highlight will be a visit to, and briefings at, the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation and Australia’s advanced nuclear research reactor at Lucas Heights.

Who should attend the course?

This course is suited to officers at all levels from all departments and agencies who may be specifically involved in nuclear policy issues or who would benefit from a practical understanding of this increasingly important set of issues.

Next date and venue

National Security College
Crawford Building #132
1 Lennox Crossing
The Australian National University

Course Facilitator

This course will be facilitated by Ms Marina Tsirbas, the National Security College’s Senior Executive Adviser, Policy Engagement.


Please send your nomination to

Program Details

This is a three day non-residential, fully-catered program.

An ANU parking permit will be supplied.

A fee of $2800 plus GST applies to this course.

Updated:  16 September 2016/ Responsible Officer:  Head of College, National Security College/ Page Contact:  Web administrator, National Security College