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SIPRI Update June 2021: New SIPRI data on world nuclear forces, SIPRI Yearbook 2021 launch, Ethiopia’s crisis, financing peacebuilding and more


The SIPRI Update on peace and security
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SIPRI Update: June 2021
The independent resource on global peace and security

SIPRI Yearbook 2021 cover
Global nuclear arsenals grow as states continue to modernize–New SIPRI Yearbook out now
This month, SIPRI launched the findings of SIPRI Yearbook 2021, which assesses the current state of armaments, disarmament and international security. A key finding is that despite an overall decrease in the number of nuclear warheads in 2020, more have been deployed with operational forces.  

Read more | Download SIPRI Yearbook 2021 Summary (PDF) Browse SIPRI Yearbook 2021 | Download the sample chapter on world nuclear forces (PDF) | Order SIPRI Yearbook 2021


2021 Stockholm Forum Managing Interconnected Risk
2021 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development: Partner-led session videos now available

On 4–7 May 2021, the Virtual Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development worked with more than 40 partner organizations to convene over 50 high-level interactive dialogues, public panels and closed partner-led sessions. Browse the videos of the partner-led sessions, accessible now on SIPRI’s YouTube channel.


Watch the recordings | Read more about the Forum


SIPRI Yearbook Ukrainian translation
Ukrainian translation of SIPRI Yearbook 2020 now available

SIPRI is pleased to have launched the Ukrainian translation of SIPRI Yearbook 2020 in collaboration with the Razumkov Centre. The translation has been made possible by the long-standing cooperation between SIPRI and the Razumkov Centre and the financial support of the Swiss Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport. The publication was launched with a video presentation and is the 21st SIPRI Yearbook to be translated into Ukrainian.


Read more | Download SIPRI Yearbook 2020 in Ukrainian (PDF) | Watch the online launch (in Ukrainian)


United Nations Security Counci.l Photo: UN/Manuel Elías
SIPRI and NUPI inform UN Security Council on climate-related peace and security risks

As part of the Climate-related Peace and Security Risks project, SIPRI and the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI) published a fact sheet on climate-related peace and security risks in Mali, adding to a series of reports covering Somalia, South Sudan and Sahel. The reports are a part of a three-year project which aims to inform the United Nations Security Council about climate-related security and development risks for selected countries and regions on the UN Security Council’s agenda.


Read more and download the fact sheets


China-EU Webinar
SIPRI hosts webinar on perspectives on China–EU relations and connectivity
On 18 May, SIPRI hosted a webinar to mark the launch of the SIPRI Policy Paper ‘China–EU Connectivity in an Era of Geopolitical Competition’. The webinar was part of a wider research project exploring the dynamic relationship between China and the European Union (EU), as well as the challenges and opportunities for better cooperation on connectivity. SIPRI has previously published two additional papers as part of the project.  

Read more | Watch the webinar | Download the SIPRI Policy Paper


Nordic-Baltic Network on Climate, Peace and Security
SIPRI in new Nordic–Baltic Network on Climate, Peace and Security
June saw the establishment of the Nordic–Baltic Network on Climate, Peace and Security, an initiative anchored in the Climate-related Peace and Security Risks project co-led by SIPRI and NUPI. The aim of the network is to create a space for research cooperation and knowledge sharing and to support member states from the region who serve on the UN Security Council and other multilateral and regional bodies. The launch took place virtually on 9 June with a keynote address by Audun Halvorsen, Norwegian State Secretary of Foreign Affairs.  

Read more | Watch the launch event | Read more about the Climate-related Peace and Security Risks project


Tigray conflict
Ethiopia’s crisis runs deeper than Tigray

International condemnation of the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Ethiopia’s northern region is intensifying as the scale of the emergency becomes clearer. External pressure on Ethiopian officials to de-escalate the conflict and expand humanitarian access, without reference to the broader context, risks exacerbating the factors driving the conflict in Tigray. This SIPRI Expert Comment lays out two competing narratives about the conflict in the region, offering a wider understanding of the political crisis in Ethiopia.

Read the SIPRI Expert Comment


Yearbook Peace Points
Peace Points: Launch of the 2021 SIPRI Yearbook

In this Peace Points video, Dan Smith, SIPRI Director, takes a retrospective look at 2020 and comments on the impact of Covid-19 on international peace and security. Looking at the findings of SIPRI Yearbook 2021, Smith comments that after a few years of deteriorating international security, 2020 was the year that things did not get worse—but they did not get much better either. Click the link below to watch the full interview.

Watch the SIPRI Peace Points


Financing peacebuilding ecosystems
Financing peacebuilding ecosystems

This SIPRI WritePeace Blog looks at the role of peacebuilding financing actors in the time of Covid-19. In order to shift the focus away from individual peacebuilding financing actors to how they align or interact with others to effect positive change, this blog argues for looking at peacebuilding from a perspective of an ecosystem, encouraging some degree of horizontal and vertical alignment within the countries in question.

Read the SIPRI WritePeace Blog


Estimating world nuclear forces
Estimating world nuclear forces: An overview and assessment of sources

The nuclear weapon inventories of the nine nuclear-armed states are largely shrouded in secrecy. This means that any assessments of the size and composition of global nuclear arsenals are estimates. Such estimates are fraught with uncertainty because of the scarcity of authoritative sources and because of the nature of the methods used to analyse the limited data that is publicly available. This SIPRI Topical Backgrounder outlines and evaluates the sources used to produce SIPRI’s annual estimates of world nuclear forces published in SIPRI Yearbook 2021.

Read the SIPRI Topical Backgrounder


8–11 November 2021
Stockholm Security Conference: Battlefields of the Future

SIPRI is pleased to announce that the sixth annual Stockholm Security Conference will convene in a virtual format on 8–11 November. The theme for this year’s conference is ‘Battlefields of the Future: Trends of Conflict and Warfare in the 21st Century’. Save the date (8–11 November) and join leading experts, practitioners and policymakers as they exchange views for a better understanding of the challenges to international security and the role of governments, multilateral organizations, humanitarian actors, researchers and civil society in dealing with the challenges of the battlefields of the future.

Read more

23 June 2021
Trick and Treat: Firearms Diversion Through Fraud in the European Union

On 23 June, SIPRI will be represented by Giovanna Maletta, Researcher in the Dual-Use and Arms Trade Control Programme, at a webinar held in the context of Project DIVERT. During their—often very long—lifecycle, firearms can be diverted from the legal market into the illegal market through various types of fraudulent activities. In the EU little systematic empirical research has been undertaken on this type of diversion. Project DIVERT is a research project, funded by the EU’s Internal Security Fund—Police, which focuses on the diversion of live-firing firearms from the legal domain into the illicit sphere within the EU. The project is coordinated by the Flemish Peace Institute.

Read more | Register


21 June 2021
SIPRI co-hosts webinar on climate-related security risks in West Africa

Earlier this month, SIPRI together with the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung’s Peace and Security Centre of Competence Sub-Saharan Africa and NUPI hosted a webinar on climate-related security risks in West Africa. Representatives from civil society, regional organizations and thematic experts exchanged perspectives on the complex relationships between climate change and conflict in West Africa as well as regional and collective actions for addressing and mitigating climate-related security risks.

Read more


7 June 2021
Prospects for US–Russia Strategic Stability

On 7 June, SIPRI together with the Stockholm Centre of Eastern European Studies at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs, and the Swedish Pugwash and the Swedish Defence Research Agency hosted a virtual discussion on US–Russian strategic stability issues, including future risk reduction measures, nuclear and conventional arms control, and military confidence building.

Read more


2 June 2021
SIPRI co-hosts webinar on climate security and peacemaking in Somalia

As part of the ‘Climate-related Peace and Security Risks’ project, SIPRI co-hosted a virtual expert-level dialogue on ‘Integrating Climate Security and Peacemaking in Somalia’ on 2 June. The expert dialogue was organized by the European Institute of Peace, the Elman Peace Center and UN Assistance Mission to Somalia with support from adelphi, NUPI and SIPRI.

Read more



Current vacancies

  • Research Assistant, Arms and Military Expenditure (Closing date: 27 June).
  • Online Events Intern supporting the Stockholm Security Conference (Closing date: 9 August).
  • Virtual Internship.

Read more


Publication cover
Autonomous Weapon Systems and International Humanitarian Law: Identifying Limits and the Required Type and Degree of Human–Machine Interaction
Compliance with international humanitarian law (IHL) is recognized as a critical benchmark for assessing the acceptability of autonomous weapon systems (AWS). However, in certain key respects, how and to what extent existing IHL rules provide limits on the development and use of AWS remains either subject to debate or underexplored. This report aims to provide an analytical framework for states and experts to assess how the normative and operational framework regulating the development and use of AWS may need to be clarified and developed.

Read the SIPRI report


Publication cover
Effective and Comprehensive CBRN Security Risk Management in the 21st Century
The multifaceted nature of security concerns related to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in the 21st century requires a novel organizing principle for the international multilateral efforts focusing on the prevention of the hostile misuse of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) knowledge and materials. This paper argues that effective CBRN security risk management requires the integration of national, regional and international strategic approaches that promote and uphold the norms of WMD non-proliferation and disarmament.

Read the EU Non-Proliferation and Disarmament Paper


SIPRI Yearbook 2021
SIPRI Yearbook 2021
SIPRI Yearbook 2021 presents a combination of original data in areas such as world military expenditure, international arms transfers, arms production, nuclear forces, armed conflicts and multilateral peace operations with state-of-the-art analysis of important aspects of arms control, peace and international security. It covers developments during 2020, including:
  • the state of nuclear arms control and the entry into force of the 2017 Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons;
  • efforts to regulate lethal autonomous weapon systems, and state behaviour in cyberspace and space;
  • regional and country-specific overviews of armed conflicts; and
  • the impact of the unfolding Covid-19 pandemic and the UN appeal for a global ceasefire to address it.

Browse the contents page | Download the summary (PDF) |
Order SIPRI Yearbook 2021 | Download the sample chapter on World nuclear forces (PDF)