05/23/2013 - 00:00

Bulletin names 2013 Rieser Fellows

Jason Parisi, Evan Thompson receive research fellowships

May 29, 2013—The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has announced the selection of Jason Parisi, a rising sophomore at Yale University, and Evan Thompson, a 2013 graduate of the University of Georgia, as the 2013 recipients of the Leonard M. Rieser Fellowships.

Parisi, who is a physics major, will study this summer at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, focusing on techniques to regulate plasma stability. His larger goal is to contribute to the industrialization of nuclear fusion as a potentially transformative energy resource, working with physicists who are deeply involved in government policies on nuclear fusion research. Parisi will also concentrate on a book project and continue his efforts on communicating with the public and policy leaders on climate and energy challenges, particularly addressing the intersection of nuclear energy, climate change, and nuclear proliferation.

Thompson will explore the issue of nuclear security in a detailed look at how, and to what degree, signatory states to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and other international conventions enforce, monitor, and report on the various global trade provisions in those agreements. He intends to clarify the current state of transparency on global trade violations, create a comprehensive database of strategic trade violations that can be used to indicate general trends and patterns of nuclear weapons proliferation, and propose reforms.

“We are quite impressed with the quality of the applicants for this year’s Rieser Fellowships,” said Bulletin Executive Director Kennette Benedict. “The proposals from Jason Parisi and Evan Thompson were exceptional, and show considerable potential to produce serious and substantive benefits. We are eager to see their results, and to support their efforts.”

In addition to receiving funding for their research projects, Parisi and Thompson will be invited to participate in the organization's Doomsday Clock Symposium on November 14, 2013, in Washington, DC, and to submit their reports for possible publication on the Bulletin’s website.

The Bulletin created the Rieser Fellowship in 1999 in memory of longtime Board chair Leonard Rieser, a Dartmouth physics professor and provost. The fellowships support undergradu­ate students who pursue research projects at the intersection of science, global security, and public policy.