RWTH: Global security in focus

The motto of the international Science · Peace · Security (SPS) conference this year is “The impact of new technologies: Destabilizing or enabling resilience?” And will take place from September 8 to 10, 2021. The organizer of the SPS’21 is Professor Malte Göttsche, head of the research group “Nuclear Verification and Disarmament” at RWTH. Around 200 participants from all over the world are expected, including Ambassador Marjolijn van Deelen, special envoy of the European External Action Service for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation, and Professor Robin Geiss, Director of the UN Institute for Disarmament Research. Due to the pandemic, the event will be held as an online conference.

Today’s international security environment is shaped by the return to great power politics and the eroding trust between states. On the one hand, new technologies that can be used by the military can have a destabilizing effect; on the other hand, scientific and technical developments also make important contributions to peace and security, such as procedures for checking whether arms control agreements are being observed. The interdisciplinary conference examines the effects of these technologies and looks for concepts on how a more resilient security environment can be achieved through scientific contributions and political measures. Nuclear, biological and chemical risks, space threats and developments in information technology such as cybersecurity or artificial intelligence are examined.

The aim of the conference is to discuss the results of ongoing research through a dialogue between academics, think tank scientists and politicians. The aim is to generate new research questions and political proposals that can address the most urgent challenges at the interface between science, peace and security. The conference is funded by the German Peace Research Foundation, the Volkswagen Foundation and the Research Association for Natural Science, Disarmament and International Security.