Nuclear Coronavirus CSS Blog

Corona and the Future of the Iran Nuclear Deal

Ever since President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the nuclear agreement with Iran in 2018, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) has been in crisis. Tehran has taken various steps that violate the JCPOA provisions, but it is keeping the door open for their full implementation. European governments have tried to circumvent related US sanctions against Iran, at least for humanitarian supplies. This should help Iran, especially with regards to the COVID-19 pandemic. But will it be possible to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons over the long term?

On 9 July 2020, Névine Schepers, Researcher in the Team Swiss and Euro-Atlantic Security at the CSS addressed this topic in a CSS Brown Bag Webinar entitled “Corona and the Future of the Iran Nuclear Deal.”

Security Technology

The Weaponisation of Synthetic Media: What Threat Does this Pose to National Security?

Image courtesy of geralt/Pixabay

This article was originally published by the Elcano Royal Institute on 14 July 2020.


The weaponisation of hyper-realistic synthetic video, audio, images, or texts –generally known as of synthetic media– may affect national security. How and to what extent?

Technology Economy Trade CSS Blog

World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Global Innovation Index

As this graphic illustrates, since 2011 China has increased its investments in innovation to great effect. China’s tech industry now rivals its European counterparts, which puts pressure on European nations to engage in constant economic innovation in order to uphold Europe’s long-held comparative advantage.

For an insight into the implications of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and targeted influence attempts in Europe, read Linda Maduz and Henrik Larsen’s Strategic Trends 2020 chapter here.

Security Economy CSS Blog

Strategic Trends 2020: Chinas Belt and Road Initiative in Eurasien

Chinas Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) ist ein beispielloses Projekt, das mit vielen Facetten daherkommt und schwer zu fassen ist. Im CSS Brown Bag Webinar am 11. Juni 2020 befasste sich Benno Zogg, Senior Researcher am CSS, mit der BRI in Eurasien. Dort zeigen sich bereits jetzt die konkreten Ausprägungen chinesischer Investitionen. Einige Länder in diesem Raum sind zu wichtigen Transitachsen zwischen China und Europa sowie gewichtigen Rohstofflieferanten für China geworden. Durch sein zunehmendes wirtschaftliches, aber auch politisches Engagement – gar im Sicherheitsbereich und durch multilaterale Formate – hat China eine Grundlage für beträchtlichen Einfluss geschaffen. Lokale Regierungen und Bevölkerungen indes gehen ganz verschieden mit diesem Akteur um.

Das ist eine Präsentation von Benno Zoggs Kapitel aus Strategic Trends 2020.

For more information on issues and events that shape our world, please visit the CSS website.


Peace Coronavirus CSS Blog

Mediation Perspectives: Why COVID-19 Ceasefires Remain an Exception

Image courtesy of Jeffery Harris/DVIDS

Mediation Perspectives is a periodic blog entry that’s provided by the CSS’ Mediation Support Team and occasional guest authors.

Humanitarian ceasefires are intended to open up windows of relief for affected civilians during armed conflict. With COVID-19 spreading across the world and the UN Secretary General’s call for a global ceasefire, hopes were high that ceasefires could help contain the pandemic and ease civilian suffering. The small number of COVID-19 ceasefires, however, is sobering. This might be explained by how a ceasefire declared in response to the coronavirus pandemic can appear to entail far-reaching commitments with uncertain benefits and high costs. In contrast to usual humanitarian ceasefires, pandemic ceasefires hence seem as too big of a risk to take. Tying ceasefire calls to concrete objectives with clear temporal and geographic limitations could help to counter this obstacle.