Philipp C. Bleek is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of International Policy and Management and Fellow at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS). His research and teaching focuses on the causes, consequences, and amelioration of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons proliferation to states and non-state actors.
During the 2012-13 academic year, he was on leave to serve as Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical, and Biological Defense Programs under a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellowship in Nuclear Security. His primary responsibilities were staffing the interagency Syria Chemical Weapons Senior Integration Group, representing the United States in a White House-led dialogue with the Russian Federation focused on Syrian chemical weapons, working on a program to bolster weapons of mass destruction-related situational awareness and warning, supporting the drafting of a new National Defense Strategy for Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction, and participating in chemical and biological terrorism red and blue-team exercises.
He has also held fellowships at Harvard University's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and the Center for a New American Security. He served on President Obama's nonproliferation policy team during the 2008 campaign and has been a consultant to the U.S. government on proliferation issues.
In addition to his current faculty position, he has taught at Georgetown University and in the Department of Defense Senior Leader Development Program. He began his work on nonproliferation issues as a Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellow working at the Federation of American Scientists and the Arms Control Association. Dr. Bleek is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a Fellow of the Truman National Security Project.
Dr. Bleek holds a PhD in international relations from Georgetown University's Department of Government; a master in public policy, with a concentration in international security and political economy, from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government; and a bachelor of arts from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, where he focused on environmental economics.
Causes, consequences, and amelioration of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons proliferation.
Courses offered in the past four years.
▲ indicates offered in the current term
▹ indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]
NPTG 8531 - Writing & Briefing Memos
The goal of this workshop is to hone students’ professionally-relevant, policy-oriented communication abilities, including memo writing and briefing. The course will include a combination of lectures, seminar-style discussion, small working group engagement, and individual student work.
Fall 2014 - MIIS, Spring 2015 - MIIS, Fall 2015 - MIIS
NPTG 8574 - Intro to WMD Nonproliferation
This course surveys the issues surrounding the proliferation of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and ballistic missiles. It also provides an introduction to nuclear and radiological terrorism, and an overview of the international nonproliferation regime.
The course is divided into three main parts: Part 1 provides an overview of the trends and technologies of WMD proliferation. Part 2 considers the nonproliferation regime in detail, concentrating on the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), the conventions banning chemical and biological weapons, supplier regimes and export controls, and verification and compliance issues. Part 3 returns to challenges to the nonproliferation regime, including states of proliferation concern known or believed to be developing WMD outside or in defiance of the NPT, CWC, and BWC and tensions within the nonproliferation regime, and discusses the range of international, multilateral, and unilateral responses to these challenges
Fall 2013 - MIIS, Spring 2014 - MIIS, Fall 2014 - MIIS, Spring 2015 - MIIS, Fall 2015 - MIIS
NPTG 8654 - Sem:WMDProliferatnInMiddleEast
This seminar examines the proliferation of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons in the Middle East, including historical developments, the present context, and alternate potential futures.
Although the focus is on state actors, proliferation risks posed by non-state terrorist organizations will be discussed as well. The course will begin with overview sessions on why states do and do not pursue and acquire nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons and on the internal and intrastate politics of the region. Subsequent sessions will focus on key regional countries. The course will conclude with integrative simulation sessions allowing participants to wrestle with the prospects for proliferation and nonproliferation in the region. Students will prepare weekly short memos, conduct group work for integrative simulation exercises, prepare an independent research project, and have various presentation opportunities.
Spring 2014 - MIIS
NPTG 8658 - Sem: CBRN Terrorism
The goal of this seminar is to develop the skills necessary to analyze the motivations and capabilities of non-state actors to acquire and use weapons of mass destruction (WMD), more specifically chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) weapons and materials, for terrorist purposes. Through class discussions, simulation exercises, and individual research, students will review the technical aspects of CBRN, examine the history of CBRN use by terrorists, assess CBRN terrorism threats and vulnerabilities, and assess policy responses to CBRN terrorism. Students are required to have substantial background knowledge of either CBRN or terrorism before joining the seminar.
Students will prepare weekly short memos, conduct group work for integrative simulation exercises, prepare an independent research project, and have various presentation opportunities.
Fall 2013 - MIIS, Spring 2014 - MIIS, Fall 2014 - MIIS, Spring 2015 - MIIS