Todd Sechser

Fast Facts

  • Professor of Politics and Public Policy at the University of Virginia
  • Coauthor of Nuclear Weapons and Coercive Diplomacy
  • Expertise in international relations, foreign policynuclear security, emerging technologies

Areas Of Expertise

  • Foreign Affairs
  • American Defense and Security
  • War and Terrorism
  • World Happenings

Todd S. Sechser, faculty senior fellow, is the Pamela Feinour Edmonds and Franklin S. Edmonds Jr. Discovery Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia and professor of public policy at the Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. Sechser's research interests include deterrence, coercive diplomacy, military technology, and nuclear security. He is coauthor of the book Nuclear Weapons and Coercive Diplomacy (Cambridge University Press, 2017), and his research has appeared in academic journals such as International Organization, the American Journal of Political ScienceInternational Studies Quarterly, the Journal of Conflict Resolution, and the Non-Proliferation Review. His writing on policy issues has been published in media outlets such as the Washington PostWall Street JournalBoston Globe, and the Christian Science Monitor, and he regularly consults for several government and military agencies. Sechser's recent media appearances have addressed the North Korea nuclear crisis, the NATO alliance, the Iran nuclear deal, and U.S.-Russia relations.

Sechser is the director of the Program on Strategic Stability Evaluation, a multi-university working group studying the effects of new technologies on international security. He was previously a Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a John M. Olin National Security Fellow at Harvard University. He received his PhD in political science from Stanford University, where he wrote an award-winning doctoral dissertation. Before entering academia, Sechser worked as a nuclear policy analyst at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

Todd Sechser News Feed

The Institute for Security and Technology (IST) held a discussion about nuclear risk reduction and crisis communication with Todd Sechser, faculty senior fellow at the University of Virginia's Miller Center, along with Dr. Tong Zhao, Dmitry Stefanovich, and Leah Walker.
Todd Sechser Institute for Security and Technology
Putin's nuclear threats aren't a magic wand, writes Todd Sechser.
UVA Today
Experts including Todd Sechser, faculty senior fellow at the University of Virginia's Miller Center, discuss Richard Nixon’s overlooked efforts to curb the spread of the world’s weapons of mass destruction.
Todd Sechser Miller Center Presents
Nuclear threats are made pretty often. What role do they play in diplomacy and how has that evolved over time? Joining guest host Austin Cross to discuss is Todd Sechser, professor of political science at the University of Virginia, senior fellow at the Miller Center of Public Affairs, and co-author of the book “Nuclear Weapons and Coercive Diplomacy.”
Todd Sechser KPCC (NPR) AirTalk
Russia has given us a vivid reminder that nuclear weapons are not a magic wand. As the war began, Vladimir Putin made several nuclear threats – both explicit and implied. But the fear of nuclear escalation has not intimidated Ukraine into submission. Nor have these threats dissuaded the West from imposing crippling sanctions on Russia and providing military aid to Ukraine. If anything, Putin’s nuclear bellicosity has only fueled the international backlash against Russia. The war has thrown a spotlight on the political limits of nuclear weapons, and dictators with nuclear ambitions should take note.
Todd Sechser Carnegie Corporation
As Stalin learned in Finland, small countries can inflict serious damage on invading superpowers.
Todd Sechser The Washington Post