Prof. Benoît Pelopidas (PhD) founded the program Nuclear Knowledges and holds the chair of excellence in security studies at CERI (Sciences Po). He is also an affiliate of the Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) at Stanford University and has been a frequent visiting fellow at Princeton University’s Program on Science and Global Security.
In France, Nuclear Knowledges is the first scholarly research program on the nuclear phenomenon, which is fully independent and transparent on its funding sources.
He has been awarded four international prizes for his research. In 2017, he has been awarded one of the most competitive EU grants: an ERC Starting Grant (1,5 million € over five years) on nuclear weapons choices.
He focuses on the construction of knowledge about nuclear weapons, their institutional, conceptual, imaginal and memorial underpinnings. Conceptually, he elaborates nuclear vulnerability beyond its material and strategic dimensions. Empirically, Benoit’s focus is on nuclear “close calls”, crisis management and French nuclear history.
Over the last seven years, he has been engaging with policymaking elites in the US and Europe as well as civil society groups to advocate innovative nuclear disarmament and arms control policies.
Since 2013, he has been coordinating a team of 13 international researchers to write the first global history of the so-called "Cuban Missile Crisis" based on primary sources worlwide, which revisits fundamental concepts of IR and security studies such as the nuclear revolution, power, sovereignty, neutrality and alliance dynamics.