Status: Open

Application Period For The Dual Degree M.A. Program In Nonproliferation Studies Still Open

May 25, 2022

MOSCOW. MAY 25, 2022. PIR PRESS. “Tensions between the US and Russia have increasingly closed the door on routes to understanding as each side increasingly looks inwards and not forwards in formulating their own policies, often with disregard for the threat perceptions and legitimate security interests of one another. The M.A. Program is something of a fortochka as our professor has said, Russian for a small ventilation window, that in this heated relationship lets in some fresh air at the grass-roots level of young minds, for better understanding within this critical relationship”, – Edward Kendall, student of the 6th cohort (2021-2023) of the Dual Degree M.A. Program in Nonproliferation Studies (implemented jointly by PIR Center, MGIMO University, and Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, USA (MIIS).

The International Dual Degree M.A. Program “Global Security, Nuclear Policy and WMD Nonproliferation”, developed jointly by PIR Center, MGIMO University and Middlebury Institute for International Studies in Monterey, USA (MIIS), is still open to new applications from young experts in global security who plan, through acquiring the master’s degree, to gain professional knowledge and skills in nuclear nonproliferation, disarmament, arms control, strategic stability, and the nuclear factor in international relations in general. Against the backdrop of aggravating US-Russian relations, interest in the Program does not fade away but continues to grow every year.

The education process within the Dual Degree M.A. Program in Nonproliferation Studies takes two years. The first semester is held in MGIMO University (Moscow); the second and third semesters are spent in MIIS (Monterey). The fourth semester is devoted to thesis preparation and an internship in international organizations (for instance, the IAEA, OPCW, UNODA, CTBTO) and national structures specializing in the development of peaceful nuclear energy, nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament, global security in general. At the end of the education, the graduates are awarded two master’s degrees: one from MIIS with a degree in nonproliferation and terrorism studies and the other from MGIMO with a degree in international affairs. Detailed information about application requirements can be found on the official website of MGIMO University as well as Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, USA.

PIR Center has the pleasure to launch a scholarship competition covering part of the tuition fees for the Program for students from Russia. To participate in the scholarship competition, prospective applicants need to:

1. Apply to the Program (full package of documents) by submitting the documents to the MGIMO and MIIS enrollment commission. NOTE: applications for scholarship will be considered only for those candidates who have submitted a full set of documents specified in the requirements of MIIS and MGIMO.

2. Demonstrate your interest in the issues of WMD nonproliferation, disarmament, arms control, nuclear energy, and global security, as well as experience in educational, research, informational, and other work in this area. For this reason, please, send to PIR Center at the following documents:

• Proposed topic of master’s thesis and its brief justification (no more than 0.5 – 1 page in English).

• Other materials that confirm the applicant’s interest in the subject of the Program and relevant experience, even if it is only academic (in Russian or English).

Such materials may include:

— a list of publications on the topic in any language with valid links or sample publications;

— a list of conferences, seminars, courses on the subject of Dual Degree M.A. Program in Nonproliferation Studies where you managed to deliver a speech, preferably with valid links to the pages of these events on the Internet;

— scientific and study works, including essays, term papers, dissertations or dissertation chapters, theses of speeches, etc. (in any language);

— any other materials that can confirm your interest in the main topic of the Program.

If there are no publications and/or study papers on the main issues of the Program, the candidate can prepare and submit an essay on the topic “The Future of Global NPT Regime: Threats and Prospects in the Age of Great Power Rivalry” (in English).

Application documents must be sent to by July 1, 2022 (if any documents are pending approval/issuance, the applicant needs to inform the selection committee). The results of the contest including final decisions on granting scholarships and their amounts will be announced before July 10, 2022. The selection committee reserves the right to invite the applicant for an oral interview.

In 2021, the Program crossed its five-year milestone. Over the years of the Program implementation, more than 40 people received qualifications in nuclear nonproliferation, disarmament, and global security. Four cohorts of students graduated from the Program, including students from Spain, Ireland, Canada, China, Mexico, the Republic of Korea, Russia, and the USA.

The 2021 pandemic did not impede the acceptance of the 6th cohort of the Dual Degree M.A. Program in Nonproliferation Studies. For young nonproliferation professionals from Russia, US, France, and Italy, the first fall semester began in Moscow, with students attending classes organized by MGIMO University and PIR Center. “The first semester in Russia on this master’s Program was full of events! I am grateful to the Program for the opportunity to meet such unique lecturers as we have had for these months. Thanks to the Program, I have a true understanding of how important it is to work to establish peace and security in the whole world!”, – says Alexandra Aladko, 6th cohort student, following the results of the semester in Russia.

Among the events organized by PIR Center during the 2021 fall semester, we can single out online webinars with Professor William Potter, Director of James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies; H.E. Gustavo Zlauvinen, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, President-designate of the X NPT Review Conference, and Izumi Nakamitsu, UN Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs. In addition, students of the 6th cohort of the Program had a unique opportunity to personally meet with H.E. Sergey Ryabkov, Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation, and H.E. Sergey Kislyak, First Deputy Chair of the Federation Council Committee on Foreign Affairs. “I clearly felt at the forefront of nonproliferation agenda thanks to PIR Center,” – says Galina Salnikova, 6th cohort student of the Dual Degree M.A. Program in Nonproliferation Studies.

On November 15, 2021, PIR Center held the III International Timerbaev Nuclear Debates which became a major event of the fall semester. III International Timerbaev Debates combined two formats – situational analysis and role-playing. The participants discussed country-specific threats to the nonproliferation regime in the medium-term perspective. Speakers presented their vision of the nuclear ambitions of Japan, South Korea, Iran, and Saudi Arabia, arguing from the position of representatives of these states. The teams of debaters were represented by such Russian and foreign universities and organizations as MGIMO Russia, MEPhI, Ural Federal University (UrFU), PIR Center, as well as MIIS and CTBTO Youth Group. “The highlight of my semester here in Russia was the Timerbaev Nuclear Debates – from reading academic works by Mr. Timerbaev to training with my teammate for our debate – I had so much fun delving deep into a critical issue with surprisingly nuanced arguments on both sides. Preparing for the debate also influenced the direction of my master thesis which will be on a related topic”, – recalls Hannah Harris, 6th cohort student of the Dual Degree M.A. Program in Nonproliferation Studies.

The fall semester of the Program culminated in a big success of four female students, who received the honor to participate in Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship Programme (MSCFP). Sarah Erickson (USA), Hannah Harris (USA), Daria Kheyrie (Russia) and Rebecca Pantani (Italy) will be awarded scholarships to cover some tuition fees and have up to 12 months-long internships at the IAEA.

Now, having completed their spring semester at Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, California, the students of the 6th cohort are getting ready for a well-deserved summer vacation and work on their master research papers. Very soon, in the summer of 2022, students of the 5th cohort will, in their turn, defend their master’s theses. Currently, they are doing internships in such international organizations as the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) and the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) while diligently preparing for final exams and the defense of their master theses. Unfortunately, in 2022, Vyacheslav Ivanovich Trubnikov, Army General, Hero of the Russian Federation, member of PIR Center Executive Board who was the Chair of State Examination Commission passed away. Working with such an experienced professional in the field was utterly inspiring and useful for young professionals who have only started their career in international relations and global security.

In September 2022, we look forward to meeting a new cohort of incoming young professionals. Do not miss the unique opportunity to become part of the Dual Degree M.A.  Program in Nonproliferation Studies and discover new professional and scientific horizons!

Questions regarding education process at the Dual Degree M.A. Program “Global Security, Nuclear Policy and WMD Nonproliferation” can be sent to