Towards an Evidence-Based Arms Control and Disarmament
Ms Ashley Müller: Welcome to the introduction episode of this mini-series on Towards Evidence-based Arms Control and Disarmament part of the GCSP’s 25th-anniversary special podcast series, I’m your host Ashley Müller. This mini-series, originally prepared for Geneva Peace Week was made in partnership with the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), and the Small Arms Survey.
In this mini-series, episode one will provide an overview of arms control and disarmament and data for arms control & disarmament verification with Marc Finaud, Head of Arms Proliferation at the GCSP
In episode two Laurence Marzal, Programme Officer at the Inter-Parliamentary Union will discuss the role of Parliaments in arms control and disarmament
In episode three we will speak with Matthias Nowak, a Researcher at the Small Arms Survey and he will provide an overview of Small Arms and Light Weapons
Episode four will feature Honourable Raphael Chegeni, member of Parliament in Tanzania will discuss Parliamentary Work in arms control and disarmament affairs and good practices in Parliament
In episode five we will speak with Anne-Severine Fabre is a Data Expert at the Small Arms Survey and will provide an overview on Sustainable Development Goal 16, targets and indicators.
Episode six, our bonus episode, we have the pleasure to speak with Senator Marilou McPhedron, with the Senate of Canada as she discussed Parliamentary Work in arms control, disarmament affairs and good practices in Parliament
Our world is severely hit by the coronavirus pandemic. In this context, emotions, fake news and post-truth have gained traction. This is why it is important that policy-makers resort to the best available evidence to make the right policy decisions. This also applies to the field of arms control and disarmament. Evidence can be scientific research, but also statistical data, citizen voices, and evaluation evidence. Policy includes legislation but also oversight, resource allocation, regulations and strategies. All of these are of the utmost importance to design an arms control and disarmament policy followed by effective action and positive outcomes for people or for strengthening confidence in compliance with international obligations.
To ensure that the use of evidence is embedded into a “business-as-usual” routine, several components need to be in place: First, Good quality, well-designed, and robust research evidence; Transparency and easy access to the data; A rationalised agenda, shifting from emotion-based to evidence-informed decisions for action
For these steps to materialize, researchers and policymakers need to cooperate and make the most out of what they can provide. Examples can include: data on illicit arms trafficking to reach SDG16 targets; multi-stakeholder approaches to the biological risk; work on the verification of nuclear disarmament; research on potential new chemical weapons, etc. Our experts will now address how this requirement for evidence is relevant to various arms control and disarmament frameworks regarding both weapons of mass destruction (nuclear, biological and chemical), and conventional weapons.