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.”
Applied History is the explicit attempt to illuminate current challenges and choices by analyzing historical precedents and analogues.
The Asia-Pacific Initiative is dedicated to studying opportunities and challenges facing one of the most diverse, complex, and pivotal regions of the world. Leveraging the resources and expertise at Harvard University, the initiative seeks to analyze issues that have increasingly defined the broader Asia-Pacific as the emerging economic, technological, and geopolitical center of gravity in the 21st century, and to develop constructive approaches to promote peace and prosperity in the region.
The Cyber Project investigates how developments in the field of cybersecurity will shape international conflict
The Defending Digital Democracy Project (D3P) is not currently active. Stay tuned for Belfer Center updates.
Directed by Eric Rosenbach, the aim of the Defending Digital Democracy Project is to develop strategies, tools, and recommendations to protect democratic processes and systems from cyber and information attacks.
The Future of Diplomacy Project is dedicated to promoting the study and understanding of diplomacy, negotiation and statecraft in international politics today. The Project aims to build Harvard Kennedy School’s ability to teach in this area, to support research in modern diplomatic practice and to build public understanding of diplomacy’s indispensable role in an increasingly complex and globalized world.
The Geopolitics of Energy Project explores the intersection of energy, security, and international politics. The project, launched in 2011, aims to improve our understanding of how energy demand and supply shape international politics – and vice versa. It also endeavors to inform policymakers and students about major challenges to global energy security and, where possible, to propose new ways of thinking about and addressing these issues. The project focuses both on conventional and alternative energies, as both will influence and be influenced by geopolitical realities.
The Harvard Project on Climate Agreements identifies and communicates scientifically sound, economically sensible, and politically pragmatic public policy options for addressing global climate change. The Harvard Project's research focuses on policy architecture, key design elements, and institutional dimensions of international and domestic climate-change policy—and draws upon leading scholars and policy practitioners from around the world.
The Intelligence Project seeks to build a new generation of intelligence practitioners prepared to serve in a rapidly changing world and to help future policymakers and intelligence consumers understand how best to interact with intelligence to gain a decision advantage. Building on multi-disciplinary research being conducted at the Belfer Center, from history to human rights and cyber technologies, the Intelligence Project links intelligence agencies with Belfer researchers, Faculty, and Kennedy School students, to enrich their education and impact public policy.
The Project on Managing the Atom (MTA) conducts and disseminates policy-relevant research on nuclear weapons, nuclear energy, and nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament. The project supports an international group of pre- and post-doctoral fellows and other experts working on these issues and helps to advance their research work through seminars, workshops, and conferences.
Working to ensure that emerging technologies are developed and managed in ways that serve the overall public good.
The US-Russia Initiative to Prevent Nuclear Terrorism aims to encourage U.S.-Russian cooperation to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons and stop acts of nuclear terrorism. Building on existing efforts to understand and prevent nuclear terrorism, this initiative seeks a joint US-Russian assessment of the threat of nuclear terrorism to develop concepts, strategy, and actions to prevent a successful nuclear attack by terrorists.