Geneva Centre for Security Policy

GCSP (Switzerland)

The Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) is an international foundation established in 1995 with 53 member states for the primary purpose of promoting peace, security and international cooperation through executive education, applied policy research and dialogue. The GCSP trains government officials, diplomats, military officers, international civil servants, and NGO and private sector staff in pertinent fields of international peace and security.

Contact information

Geneva Centre for Security Policy – GCSP

Geneva Centre for Security Policy – GCSP
Maison de la paix
Chemin Eugene-Rigot 2D
P.O. Box 1295
CH-1211 Geneva 1 (Switzerland)

Point of contact

Mr Simon Cleobury, Head of Arms Control and Disarmament

The team

Name, Surname, contact Resume Speciality/Research Focus

Mr Simon Cleobury

Head of Arms Control and Disarmament

Simon Cleobury is Head of Arms Control and Disarmement at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy. He is a former British Deputy Disarmament Ambassador (2017 – 2023), where he represented the UK at the Conference on Disarmament and other disarmament fora in Geneva. Prior to that he worked in the Security Council Team and then the Peacebuilding Team at the Mission to the UN in New York (2012 – 2016). Prior to his diplomatic career, he was a corporate lawyer with global law firm Baker McKenzie. Simon obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Modern History at University College London and a Master’s Degree in Historical Research from Oxford University.  He studied law at BPP Law School, London.
  • Arms control
  • Disarmament
  • Non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and conventional weapons
  • Middle East
  • International Humanitarian Law

Mr Tobias Vestner

Head of Research and Policy Advice & Head of Security and Law

Tobias Vestner leads GCSP’s Research and Policy Advice Department as well as the Security and Law Programme. He oversees and manages GCSP’s analysis and advice activities as well as researches and teaches on the intersection between security policy and international law. Tobias Vestner regularly advises governments, international organizations, and private firms on global security and legal issues. He has published several books and papers (see below) and provided insights to various media outlets, including the U.S. National Public Radio, NBC News, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, Le Temps, and RTS Geopolitis.

Tobias Vestner has many years of experience in international law, international relations, and policymaking. He is an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at Exeter University, a Fellow at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (NATO), and a Non-Resident Fellow at the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR). A former reserve member of the Swiss Special Forces Command, he serves as reserve Legal Advisor at the Swiss Armed Forces Staff. He is member of the Board of Directors of the International Society for Military Law and the Law of War (ISMLLW) and member of the International Institute of Humanitarian Law (IIHL).

Before joining the GCSP, Tobias Vestner was Research Affiliate and Global Futures Fellow at Georgetown University. Prior to that, he was Policy Advisor at the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, where he managed political processes with regard to the export of conventional weapons, and participated in the UN negotiations of the Arms Trade Treaty. Previously, while at the Law of Armed Conflict Section at the Swiss Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sports, he contributed to bilateral negotiations on military cooperation, and trained military officers in international humanitarian law.

Tobias Vestner holds a Master of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, a Master of Laws in International and European Law from the University of Geneva, and a Bachelor degree in Swiss law from the University of Lausanne. Tobias Vestner has Swiss and German nationality and is fluent in English, French, and German. 

  • International Law
  • International Humanitarian Law
  • Weapons Law
  • Disarmament Law

Dr Jean-Marc Rickli

Head of Global and Emerging Risks

Dr Jean-Marc Rickli is the Head of Global and Emerging Risks at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP) in Geneva, Switzerland. He is the co-chair of the NATO Partnership for Peace Consortium emerging security challenges working group and a senior advisor for the AI (Artificial Intelligence) Initiative at the Future Society. He is also a member of The IEEE Global Initiative on Ethics of Autonomous and Intelligent Systems and represents the GCSP in the United Nations in the framework of the Governmental Group of Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems (LAWS). He is a member of the advisory board of Tech4Trust, the first Swiss startup acceleration program in the field of digital trust and cybersecurity. In 2020, he was nominated as 
Prior to these appointments, Dr Rickli was an assistant professor at the Department of Defence Studies of King’s College London. Dr Rickli received his PhD and MPhil in International Relations from Oxford University, UK, where he was also a Berrow scholar at Lincoln College. His latest book published by Georgetown University Press is entitled Surrogate Warfare: The Transformation of War in the Twenty-first Century. He has lived and worked in Europe, USA, Middle East and China.
  • New technologies
  • Arms Control
  • Middle East