Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Melissa Hanham

Senior Research Associate
, James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies & META Lab

Melissa Hanham is a Senior Research Associate in the East Asia Nonproliferation Program (EANP) at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS), as well as the Mixed-Methods, Evaluation, Training & Analysis (META) Lab.

Her regional interests include the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, North Korean WMD procurement and proliferation networks, China’s nuclear posture, and East Asian security. She also studies Chinese, South Korean, and Japanese nuclear exports, as well as East and Southeast Asian export control systems.

Melissa supports MIIS' research by investigating new techniques in open source geospatial analysis, incorporating imagery and other remote sensing data, large data sets, social media, 3D modeling, and GIS mapping. She teaches “Geospatial Tools for Nonproliferation Analysis” at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, and is a regular contributor to Arms Control Wonk and Bellingcat.


  • MA in International Security Policy and East Asia from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs
  • BA in International Studies from Johns Hopkins University
  • Certificate of Nonproliferation from the Monterey Institute of International Studies


Previously, Melissa worked for International Crisis Group in Beijing, China and Seoul, South Korea.

Course List

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

NPTG 8533 - WKSHGeospatialTools/NPAnalysis      

This course serves to introduce students to the increasingly important role of overhead reconnaissance and imagery analysis in nonproliferation. Students will receive a background in the rise of commercial satellite imagery and its open-source intelligence applications. They will learn basic techniques for identifying nuclear- and missile-related facilities by using their knowledge of how these facilities work, ground photos, and crowd-sourcing. Students will also learn how to order and manipulate satellite imagery in Google Earth and SketchUp in order to derive new value-added information for their research.

Fall 2016 - MIIS, MIIS Workshop, Fall 2017 - MIIS, MIIS Workshop

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