Youth Education Program
Daisy Alliance’s Youth Education program aims to build a new generation of public officials dedicated to changing the way we view security and the role of nuclear weapons in providing that security. We create educational materials for high school and college students designed to frame international security in a broader context, examining nuclear weapons from diverse perspectives and linking to other key issues, such as climate change and the legacies of colonialism. Our goal is to provide well-rounded curricula that deepens student understanding of key issues and encourage out of the box thinking to develop novel solutions to prevent the devastating consequences of a nuclear detonation. We particularly focus on providing resources to underfunded schools and HBCU's.
Active Learning Simulation Packages
As part of our education program, Daisy Alliance has created free, downloadable learning packages for high school and college instructors, to be used in class or as extracurricular simulations. These day long active learning simulations provide students with negotiating experience, networking opportunities, and a deeper understanding of the linkages between nuclear weapons, peace, and security. Students gain practical skills in diplomacy and negotiation while applying concepts learned in the classroom to actual, real-world challenges. Active learning has numerous benefits, including increased student engagement, retention, and critical thinking skills.
Each learning package includes a faculty guide (including instructions, suggested assignments, and sample schedule), issue guides that provide students with an overview of the issue and additional resources for further research, and role guides. In 2022, Daisy Alliance partnered with the Union of Concerned Scientists to create two new active learning simulations on the US nuclear posture and engaging China in nuclear talks.
Rethinking the US Nuclear Posture Review
While global support is surging for the prohibition of nuclear weapons, the US still possesses 3,800 nuclear warheads. Almost all parts of the US nuclear arsenal are currently undergoing modernization, with weapons that are more accurate, capable of evading defenses, and fielding both conventional and nuclear weapons. As long as nuclear weapons exist, there is the chance of detonation, either by accident, miscalculation, or on purpose. The consequences to humanity would be devastating. This simulation features a hypothetical scenario—a newly elected president who is committed to nuclear arms control has established a commission to create a set of recommendations for the US president to help reduce reliance on nuclear weapons in US security policy and signal to the international community that the US is ready to make a serious commitment to nuclear disarmament. Students role play representatives from the US, the Humanitarian Initiative, and civil society.
China's growing nuclear capabilities, US nuclear modernization, technological advancements, and deteriorating relations between the US and China all present serious challenges to strategic stability. Bilateral talks are needed to reduce the threat posed by nuclear weapons—misperception and lack of trust increase the risk of nuclear miscalculation and accident, while ongoing regional challenges increase the chance of nuclear weapons being used deliberately. However, differing perspectives on security and the role of nuclear weapons have proved challenging to overcome. In this simulation, students role play representatives from he US, China, and civil society. Their goal is to create a set of recommendations for the US and China to build trust and increase transparency on nuclear weapons issues, with the aim of increasing strategic stability and reducing tensions.
Restarting US-China Dialogue on Nuclear Weapons
Negotiating a Middle East Nuclear Weapons Free Zone
Nuclear arms control in the Middle East has been on the international agenda for more than 40 years, yet little substantive progress has been made. Regional insecurity coupled with Israel's nuclear arsenal and Iran's enrichment activities presents a significant challenge. Nuclear weapons-free zones are regional agreements that prohibit states from acquiring, developing, or stockpiling nuclear weapons, helping to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons. In this simulation, students role play representatives from relevant countries, including key Middle Eastern countries and major powers. The simulation goal is for students to agree to a treaty, declaration of principles, or confidence building measures that will enhance regional security and create a pathway to a nuclear-weapons-free zone.
Bruce A. Roth International Diplomacy Simulation
Since 2012, Daisy Alliance has partnered with higher education institutions to host extracurricular active learning simulations on salient nuclear weapons issues. Participating schools include Morehouse College, Spelman College, University of West Georgia, University of North Georgia, University of Kentucky, Georgia Institute of Technology, and Emory University.
Daisy Alliance will partner with the University of Kentucky, Georgia Tech, and Spelman College to sponsor active learning simulations during the 2022/2023 school year.
For more information or to host or participate in the Bruce A. Roth International Diplomacy Simulation, contact Holly Lindamood at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Past Conferences: Negotiating a Middle East Nuclear-weapons-free Zone
From 2012-2019, Daisy Alliance sponsored five active learning simulations at Atlanta-area higher education institutions on negotiating a nuclear-weapons-free zone in the Middle East. These simulations are similar in structure to the Model UN, with students representing individual Middle East countries and other relevant countries and IGOs, such as the US, Russia, and the European Union. Simulations lasted six hours with between 20-50 students participating.
The simulation structure included both moderated and unmoderated debate. Each country prepared an opening statement, with some professors requiring additional assignments for their class, including country and topic research projects.
The partnership included a joint-research project on the importance of simulations and active learning. Data was collected before, during, and after the Conference.