Stanton Nuclear Security Fellows



Paul Avey
Christine Leah
Zachary Zwald
Zachary Zwald and Paul  Avey Christine Leah

(from left to right: Zachary Zwald, Paul Avey, Christine Leah)

Paul Avey is a Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow in the Security Studies Program at MIT. He is working on a book project that explores why states without nuclear weapons challenge and resist nuclear armed opponents. In addition to nuclear politics, Paul’s research interests center on foreign policy and international relations theory. He is the author or co-author of articles in International Security, International Studies Quarterly (forthcoming), and Foreign Policy. Paul was previously a pre-doctoral fellow with the Managing the Atom project and International Security Program at Harvard’s Belfer Center for International Studies. He earned a Ph.D. and M.A. in political science from the University of Notre Dame, an M.A. in social sciences from the University of Chicago, and a B.A. in political science and history from the University of Iowa. He remains a devoted, though perpetually disappointed, fan of the Chicago Cubs and Iowa Hawkeyes.

Christine Leah will be arriving in October, and will be a Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow in the Security Studies Program at MIT. She was previously a visiting fellow at the Rajaratnam School of International Studies, a summer associate at the RAND Corporation, a research intern at IISS-Asia, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, IISS-London, the French Ministry of Defense, and the UMP office of Nicolas Sarkozy. She is an alumna of SWAMOS, PPNT, and the Woodrow Wilson Nuclear Bootcamp.  Christine received her Ph.D from the Australian National University.

Zachary Zwald is an Assistant Professor jointly appointed in the U.S. Air War College and the USAF Counterproliferation Center.  He received his PhD from the Department of Political Science at the University of California at Berkeley and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Mershon Center for International Security Studies at the Ohio State University.  Zwald's research examines judgment- and decision-making processes on issues at the intersection of technology and international security, specifically nuclear deterrence and military technology innovation.  In an article to be published in Security Studies, Zwald provides a systematic explanation of how policymakers arrive at their nuclear doctrine and force structure policy preferences; and, his book manuscript develops competing models of military technology innovation and applies them to the case of U.S. ballistic missile defense.  While at MIT, Zwald will complete an article that examines how U.S. policymakers’ established patterns of thinking about credible nuclear deterrence affect the feasibility of tailoring the U.S. deterrent in the 21st century.