2016-2017 GRADUATE RESEARCH AWARDS for Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

2017 Award Winners Seminar Report

Results of the 2016-2017 Graduate Research Awards
for Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

Competition Details

(message en français)

Graduate Research Awards for Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation are offered by The Simons Foundation and the International Security Research and Outreach Programme (ISROP) of Global Affairs Canada (GAC).

A total of four awards of CAD$5,000 are available to Canadian Master’s and/or Doctoral candidates to support the research and writing of an academic paper responding to a specific Non-Proliferation, Arms Control and Disarmament (NACD) topic.   Awards also include domestic travel support to Ottawa where successful candidates will present their completed papers during a special event at Global Affairs Canada Headquarters in February 2017.

   Deadline for applications:                                                    December 5, 2016
   Selection of four award recipients:                                    January 11, 2017
   Presentations at GAC Headquarters in Ottawa:               February 9, 2017


Applications should be sent to Elaine Hynes at The Simons Foundation by email to: ehynes@thesimonsfoundation.ca by the close of business (PST) on December 5, 2016.

Your application must include:

  • Your resume, including proof of citizenship status.
  • A complete, official transcript of your grades (electronic copies of official transcripts are acceptable).
  • An academic paper (1,500 words, MLA format) responding to one of the specific Non-Proliferation, Arms Control and Disarmament topics shown below.


The competition is open to Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents/landed immigrants currently enrolled in a graduate programme.  Graduate students studying outside Canada are eligible to apply but please note that funding to cover the cost of successful applicants' travel to Ottawa for the event at Global Affairs Canada in February is limited to domestic travel within Canada (or the equivalent).

Previous recipients of a Graduate Research Award are not eligible in order to expand the community of Canadian scholars working on non-proliferation, arms control and disarmament (NACD) issues.


Applications will be reviewed by an Expert Review Panel made up of three experts and academics working in this field who will recommend four award winners for final approval by representatives of The Simons Foundation and ISROP.  Successful candidates will be notified on January 11, 2017.


Award winners will present their papers at a special event hosted by Global Affairs Canada at GAC Headquarters in Ottawa on February 9, 2017 and will be asked to produce a PowerPoint deck for their presentation.  The cash awards will be issued at the GRA event in Ottawa and a report, including the papers presented, will be published online by The Simons Foundation. Please note that attendance at the GRA event in Ottawa is a mandatory requirement of the award.  Approved domestic travel, accommodation and meal expenses will be provided by The Simons Foundation.

TOPICS for 2016-2017

Master’s and Doctoral candidates may choose to address one of the following subjects:

  1. Some speculate that a decline in public concern about the impact of nuclear weapons since the Cold War has undermined the political will required to advance efforts for nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament.  Assess the overall impact of public opinion about nuclear weapons on non-proliferation and disarmament efforts – how does it rank as a factor in achieving a world free of nuclear weapons?
  2. The number of countries considering, or constructing, nuclear power plants continues to increase. Some of these are developing countries with weak control regimes. Will this trend increase the risk of weapons-useable fissile material being misplaced, acquired or diverted to clandestine purposes, or are current international verification and control mechanisms sufficient to address this risk?
  3. In light of recent developments in the Middle East and North Africa, has the Chemical Weapons Convention proven to be an effective instrument in eliminating chemical weapons, or should it be strengthened? Explain.
  4. What are the key legal issues pertaining to space debris remediation?  How are they affecting the development of active debris removal technology, and how can they be addressed to promote new space debris remediation initiatives?

Suggested reading lists for each topic are available upon request.To receive a copy, please contact Elaine Hynes at The Simons Foundation by email to ehynes@thesimonsfoundation.ca or at telephone number 778-782-7779.


The primary objective of the Graduate Research Awards is to enhance Canadian
graduate level scholarship on disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation issues.


Disclaimer: The views and positions expressed through the GRA programme are intended to stimulate
academic debates as part of an annual youth education partnership jointly organized by The Simons Foundation and ISROP; the themes do not necessarily reflect the views of The Simons Foundation, Global Affairs Canada
or the Government of Canada.