The Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy was founded in 1996 by Dr Rebecca Johnson, and is internationally recognised for high quality analysis and strategies to develop and support multilateral disarmament and security agreements. Acronym’s reputation for strategic initiatives, accuracy and integrity enables it to engage with key governments and decision-makers, whilst also capacity building and networking to increase the effectiveness of progressive civil society in different countries. The Acronym Institute conducts research and disseminates ideas, analyses and strategies on: peace and human security; disarmament; arms control; non-proliferation; environmental sustainability; women’s security, rights and democratic participation; and international law and human rights, including international humanitarian law. Acronym engages with policy-makers and opinion-formers and assists in the education of the public and elected representatives on debates, policies and negotiations on human, national and international peace and security, including the effects of weapons, security doctrines and disarmament.
Nomi Bar-Yaacov - Board member
Nomi Bar-Yaacov is a Middle East Foreign Policy Adviser who has been a member of the Acronym Institute Board since 2010. Between 1993 and 1996 Nomi worked for the United Nations where she held various posts in the Department of Political Affairs and the Executive Office of the Secretary-General in UN Headquarters in New York, including as speech writer for the UN Secretary-General. She had also worked as legal adviser to the UN Mission in Haiti, political adviser to the UN Mission in Guatemala, and on elections in Mozambique and South Africa. Between 1997 and 1998 she worked as legal adviser to various missions of the Organisation of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in the Balkans, including Albania and Bosnia Herzegovina, Serbia and in Montenegro. Between 1998 and 2001 she worked as a diplomatic correspondent covering the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and the crisis in the Balkans for Agence France-Presse, and between 2001-2003 Nomi was a Visiting Fellow at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) before becoming a member of IISS Senior Staff and later heading the Middle East Programme from 2003 - 2005.
Tim Caughley - Board member
From February 2002 to March 2006, Tim Caughley was New Zealand’s Ambassador for Disarmament and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva. After completing his Geneva posting, Tim joined the United Nations as the Deputy Secretary-General of the Conference on Disarmament and the Director of the UN Office of Disarmament Affairs in Geneva overseeing all Geneva-based disarmament issues (from April 2006 to February 2009). Prior to 2002, Tim’s assignments in the New Zealand Foreign Service included appointments as International Legal Adviser (1997-2001) and High Commissioner to the Cook Islands (1991-1994). He is currently Resident Senior Fellow at the UN Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) and is additionally self-employed as a consultant specialising in disarmament and humanitarian affairs. He joined the Acronym Institute Board in 2009.
Natalie Goldring - UN Consultant
Dr. Natalie Goldring is a Senior Fellow in the Center for Peace and Security Studies and an Adjunct Full Professor in the Security Studies Program in the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University in the United States. She represents the Acronym Institute on issues related to small arms and light weapons, conventional weapons transfers, and the Arms Trade Treaty. Dr. Goldring’s research focuses on a wide range of international security issues, including small arms and light weapons, the international trade in conventional weapons, and nuclear proliferation. She earned her PhD in political science from MIT, with a specialization in defense and arms control. She also holds a master’s degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in political science from Wellesley College.
Rebecca Johnson - Executive Director
Dr Rebecca Johnson is director of the Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy, which she founded in 1995. She is also Co-Chair of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) and a member of the International Panel on Fissile Materials (IPFM) and serves on various advisory councils. With early training in physics and a PhD from the London School of Economics (LSE) in multilateral diplomacy and international relations, she has written extensively on the NPT, treaty-making, security, non-proliferation, deterrence and humanitarian disarmament. She writes for academic and policy journals, advises NGOs and governments on a range of disarmament, security and gender policies, and is a featured writer for openDemocracy. Recent books include Unfinished Business, about civil society and government strategies to achieve the CTBT (United Nations, 2009), Trident and International Law (with Angie Zelter, Luath Press, 2011), and Decline or Transform: Nuclear disarmament and security beyond the NPT review process (with Tim Caughley and John Borrie, London 2012).