The overarching question imparting urgency to this exploration is: Can U.S.-Russian contention in cyberspace cause the two nuclear superpowers to stumble into war? In considering this question we were constantly reminded of recent comments by a prominent U.S. arms control expert: At least as dangerous as the risk of an actual cyberattack, he observed, is cyber operations’ “blurring of the line between peace and war.” Or, as Nye wrote, “in the cyber realm, the difference between a weapon and a non-weapon may come down to a single line of code, or simply the intent of a computer program’s user.”
This project examines the spread of military power in the international system. It outlines the key factors that explain how countries deal with the debut of new military innovations and how variation in the diffusion of military innovations impacts crucial areas of international politics, especially the balance of power and warfare. The theory—highlighting the interaction of geopolitical position, financial capacity, and military organizational setup—shows the decision paths that confront countries trying to respond to military innovations; what determines the path a country is likely to take; what predicts whether the efforts of a country will succeed or fail; and how those outcomes influence power balances and war. A clear understanding of how military power has spread in the past is necessary to understand the way it is likely to spread in the future.
As the United States seeks to consolidate its conventional military dominance and confront challenges from asymmetric actors and rising Asian powers, understanding the diffusion of military power is an increasingly important task for academics and policymakers alike.
Please join us! Coffee and tea provided.
Everyone is welcome, but admittance will be on a first come – first served basis.