George Perkovich

Vice President for Studies
Perkovich’s research focuses on nuclear strategy and nonproliferation, with a concentration on South Asia, Iran, and the problem of justice in the international political economy.


PhD, University of Virginia
MA, Harvard University
BA, University of California at Santa Cruz 


English; French; Russian


George Perkovich is vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. His research focuses on nuclear strategy and nonproliferation, with a concentration on South Asia, Iran, and the problem of justice in the international political economy.

Perkovich is author of the award-winning book India’s Nuclear Bomb (University of California Press, 2001) and co-author of the Adelphi Paper “Abolishing Nuclear Weapons,” published in September 2008 by the International Institute for Strategic Studies. This paper is the basis of the book Abolishing Nuclear Weapons: A Debate, which includes seventeen critiques by thirteen eminent international commentators. He also co-wrote a major Carnegie report entitled “Universal Compliance: A Strategy for Nuclear Security,” a blueprint for rethinking the international nuclear-nonproliferation regime. The report offers a fresh approach to dealing with states, terrorists, nuclear weapons, and fissile materials to ensure global safety and security.

He served as a speechwriter and foreign policy adviser to Senator Joe Biden from 1989 to 1990. Perkovich is an adviser to the International Commission on Nuclear Nonproliferation and Disarmament and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations’ task force on U.S. nuclear policy. 

  • Testimony Subcommittee on Strategic Forces of the Senate Armed Services Committee February 25, 2015
    Regional Nuclear Dynamics

    The most immediately pressing objective of U.S. policy should be to apply vigorous, creative diplomatic and political energy to prevent another crisis between India and Pakistan, and if one cannot be prevented, to manage it with minimal escalation.

  • Q&A November 25, 2014 Русский 中文
    Iran Nuclear Talks Extended, Again

    Washington and its allies should strategically continue patient diplomacy unless Iran resumes provocative nuclear activities.

  • Op-Ed Washington Post July 11, 2014
    How to Resolve the Iran Impasse

    If Iran, the United States and the others could agree to pre-stock fuel for Bushehr and focus Iran’s enrichment program on research and development, it would be in everyone’s interest to extend the negotiations on this basis.

  • Podcast June 25, 2014
    One Year After Sunnylands: Assessing the U.S.-China Relationship

    U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to Asia in April 2014 underscored the importance of the U.S.-China relationship one year after the landmark U.S.-China Summit at the Sunnylands estate.

  • Peace Review: A Journal of Social Justice June 6, 2014
    Verghese Koithara’s “Managing India’s Nuclear Forces”

    In the book “Managing India’s Nuclear Forces,” Verghese Koithara explores the real-life challenges of nuclear maturity with clinical insight and exemplary balance.

  • Op-Ed National Interest June 3, 2014
    India and Pakistan: A Thin Line Between War and Peace

    The challenge for Indians and Pakistanis—and for the U.S. government, which inevitably would be impelled to mediate a new conflict—is to take steps now to prevent major terrorist attacks on India and to prepare modalities to manage consequences if prevention fails.

  • Op-Ed Council on Foreign Relations May 21, 2014
    The Coming Struggle Over Iran Nuclear Pact

    Iran and the P5+1 are unlikely to reach an agreement on Iran’s controversial nuclear program by July 20, but a partial accord is possible by the end of the year.

  • Op-Ed National Interest April 5, 2014
    Nuclear Zero After Crimea

    Today, five years after Prague, the idea of seeking to eliminate all nuclear weapons has nearly evaporated from international politics.

  • Q&A March 27, 2014 Русский 中文
    What Are the Global Implications of the Ukraine Crisis?

    Russia’s annexation of Crimea and possible future incursions into eastern Ukraine could reshape the geopolitical map of Europe and derail cooperation between Moscow and the West for years to come.

  • Op-Ed Arms Control Today March 19, 2014
    Crafting a Well-Rounded Nuclear Deal With Iran

    The Obama administration and Congress should divert a fraction of the time and energy now spent debating whether to add sanctions on Iran to the more difficult challenge of figuring out how to cooperate in removing them if a final agreement is reached.

  • April 1, 2013
    Do Unto Others: Toward a Defensible Nuclear Doctrine

    President Barack Obama should articulate a narrowed framework for the legitimate use of nuclear weapons that the United States believes would be defensible for others to follow as long as nuclear weapons remain.

  • Abolishing Nuclear Weapons: A Debate
    Carnegie Endowment for International Peace February 13, 2009
    Abolishing Nuclear Weapons: A Debate

    A distinguished group of experts from thirteen countries explore how to overcome obstacles to nuclear disarmament and pose questions that require further official and nongovernmental deliberation.

  • Adelphi Paper September 16, 2008
    Abolishing Nuclear Weapons

    In this new Adelphi Paper published by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), George Perkovich and James M. Acton examine the challenges that exist to abolishing nuclear weapons completely, and suggest what can be done now to start overcoming them.

  • Strategic Studies Institute October 1, 2005
    Iran Gets the Bomb—Then What?

    The acquisition of nuclear weapons by terrorists or any additional states would shake the international system. The more strategically important the state, the greater the potential threat to global security.

  • Cover - India's Nuclear Bomb: The Impact on Global
    University of California Press, Oxford University Press in South Asia November 5, 2001
    India's Nuclear Bomb: The Impact on Global Proliferation


  • Cover - India's Nuclear Bomb: The Impact on Global
    Berkeley, University of California Press December 2, 1999
    India's Nuclear Bomb: The Impact on Global Proliferation

    Why did India bid for nuclear weapon status at a time when 149 nations had signed a ban on nuclear testing? What drove India's new Hindu nationalist government to depart from decades of nuclear restraint, a control that no other nation with similar capacities had displayed? How has U.S. nonproliferation policy affected India's decision making?


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