The Helen Dwight Reid prize is awarded annually for the best dissertation successfully defended during the previous two years in the field of international relations, law, and politics. The Recipient is Nicholas L. Miller, Brown University for the Dissertation: “Hegemony and Nuclear Proliferation,” Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Contrary to widespread predictions of nuclear domino effects, Miller’s timely and ambitious study uncovers the puzzle of a temporal decline in global interest in nuclear weapons. Using a “multicausal” approach, it historicizes our understanding of both why and how the United States affected the policy demands for proliferation abroad. The study also takes on the pessimism about sanctions. For states actually dependent on the United States, the threat of sanctions dramatically increased their security, domestic, and normative costs of pursuing proliferation. Successfully combining both statistical and archival work, Miller makes us rethink the pursuit and efficacy of nonproliferation policies by the major powers.
Thanks to the Award Committee: Saadia Pekkanen, University of Washington, chair; Audie Klotz, Syracuse University; and Bob Vitalis, University of Pennsylvania.