Senior Fellow for Nuclear Policy
Robert Norris
Worldwide nuclear arsenals,
History of nuclear weapons,
The Manhattan Project

Dr. Robert Standish Norris joined FAS in July 2011 as a senior fellow for nuclear policy.

Dr. Norris was a senior research associate with the Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington, DC from 1984 to his retirement in 2011. His principal areas of expertise include writing and research on all aspects of the nuclear weapons programs of the United States, Soviet Union/Russia, Britain, France, and China, as well as India, Pakistan, and Israel.

He was co-editor of NRDC’s Nuclear Weapons Databook series and was a co-author of U.S. Nuclear Warhead Production, Volume II (1987); U.S. Nuclear Warhead Facility Profiles, Volume III (1987); Soviet Nuclear Weapons, Volume IV (1989); and British, French and Chinese Nuclear Weapons, Volume V (1994).  More recent books include Making the Russian Bomb: From Stalin to Yeltsin (1995) and Atomic Audit: The Costs and Consequences of U.S. Nuclear Weapons Since 1940 (1998), with other authors.  He has co-authored or contributed to the chapter on nuclear weapons in the 1985 – 2000 editions of the SIPRI Yearbook.  He has written articles for Arms Control Today and Security Dialogue, and has authored a column for the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists since 1987. He co-authored the online/DVD article on “Nuclear Weapons” of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

He wrote a biography of General Leslie R. Groves, the head of the Manhattan Project that built the atomic bomb during World War II. The book, Racing for the Bomb: General Leslie R. Groves, the Manhattan Project’s Indispensable Man (Steerforth Press, 2002) has been favorably reviewed in the New York TimesWashingtonPost, Foreign Affairs, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Assembly, U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, and The Journal of Military History among other publications and won the Distinguished Writing Award for best Biography of 2002 from the Army Historical Foundation.

Dr. Norris received his Ph.D. in Political Science from New York University in 1976, and has taught at New York University, Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, Miami University’s European campus in Luxembourg, and American University in Washington, DC.