Jessica C. Varnum

Senior Research Associate &
Jessica VarnumProject Manager
Monterey, CA


Jessica Varnum manages all CNS work for the Nuclear Threat Initiative website, including extensive nonproliferation resource collections, country profiles, and analytical reports.

Varnum is an expert on Turkey, and she regularly lectures, writes, and contributes to both research and dialogue projects focusing on Turkish foreign and national security policies, and challenges and opportunities for U.S.-NATO-Turkey relations. Varnum also specializes in the nonproliferation challenges associated with the spread of nuclear energy and other civil nuclear technologies. An Adjunct Professor at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, she teaches two classes in the MA Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies program:

The author of “Turkey in Transition: Toward or Away from Nuclear Weapons?” (in Forecasting Nuclear Proliferation in the 21st Century: A Comparative Perspective, Stanford University Press), her work also appears in the The Nonproliferation Review, The International Herald Tribune, on the Nuclear Threat Initiative website, and on Arms Control Wonk.


Varnum previously worked at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Naval Postgraduate School, the Atlantic Council of the United States, and with U.S. Senators Susan M. Collins and Olympia J. Snowe.


She earned an M.A. in International Policy Studies with a Certificate in Nonproliferation Studies from the Monterey Institute of International Studies, and a B.A. in Government and International Studies, summa cum laude, from Colby College.