Jonathan B. Tucker

The late Jonathan B. Tucker was a Senior Fellow at the Federation of American Scientists. He was the editor of Toxic Terror: Assessing Terrorist Use of Chemical and Biological Weapons (MIT Press, 2000) and the author of Scourge: The Once and Future Threat of Smallpox and War of Nerves: Chemical Warfare from World War I to Al-Qaeda.

  • Innovation, Dual Use, and Security

    Innovation, Dual Use, and Security

    Managing the Risks of Emerging Biological and Chemical Technologies

    Jonathan B. Tucker

    A framework for assessing the security risks of emerging dual-use technologies and devising tailored governance strategies is proposed and applied to contemporary case studies.

    Recent advances in disciplines such as biotechnology, nanotechnology, and neuropharmacology entail a “dual-use dilemma” because they promise benefits for human health and welfare yet pose the risk of misuse for hostile purposes. The emerging field of synthetic genomics, for example, can produce custom DNA molecules for life-saving drugs but also makes possible the creation of deadly viral agents for biological warfare or terrorism. The challenge for policymakers is to prevent the misuse of these new technologies without forgoing their benefits. Innovation, Dual Use, and Security offers a systematic approach for managing the dual-use dilemma.

    The book presents a “decision framework” for assessing the security risks of emerging technologies and fashioning governance strategies to manage those risks. This framework is applied to fourteen contemporary case studies, including synthetic genomics, DNA shuffling and directed evolution, combinatorial chemistry, protein engineering, immunological modulation, and aerosol vaccines. The book also draws useful lessons from two historical cases: the development of the V-series nerve agents in Britain and the use and misuse of LSD by the U.S. Army and the CIA.

    Innovation, Dual Use, and Security offers a comprehensive, multifaceted introduction to the challenges of governing dual-use technologies in an era of rapid innovation. The book will be of interest to government officials and other practitioners as well as to students and scholars in security studies, science and technology studies, biology, and chemistry.

    • Hardcover $54.00 £45.00
    • Paperback $35.00 £28.00
  • Toxic Terror

    Toxic Terror

    Assessing Terrorist Use of Chemical and Biological Weapons

    Jonathan B. Tucker

    In-depth case studies of twelve terrorist groups and individuals who, from 1946 to 1998, allegedly acquired or employed CBW agents.

    Policymakers, scholars, and the news media have been alarmed by the potential for chemical and biological weapons (CBW) terrorism, and the U.S. Congress has allocated billions of dollars for counterterrorism and "consequence management" programs. Driving these concerns are the global spread of scientific knowledge and technology relevant to CBW terrorism and the vulnerability of civilian populations to chemical and biological attacks.

    Notably lacking from the analysis, however, has been a careful assessment of the terrorists themselves. What types of terrorist groups or individuals are both capable of acquiring chemical and biological weapons and motivated to use them, and for what purposes? Further, what types of toxic agents would probably be produced, and how would they be delivered?

    Answers to these questions would enable policymakers to prepare for the most likely contingencies. To this end, Toxic Terror provides in-depth case studies of twelve terrorist groups and individuals who, from 1946 to 1998, allegedly acquired or employed CBW agents. The cases were researched from primary sources, including court documents, interviews, and declassified government files.

    By comparing the twelve cases, the book identifies characteristic motivations and patterns of behavior associated with CBW terrorism and provides an empirical basis for prudent, cost-effective strategies of prevention and response.

    • Hardcover $45.00 £38.00
    • Paperback $35.00 £28.00