David Wright

Co-Director, Global Security Program

David Wright is a nationally known expert on the technical aspects of missile defense systems, missile proliferation, and space weapons. He has authored numerous articles and reports on arms control and international security, such as Securing the Skies: Ten Steps the United States Should Take to Improve the Security and Sustainability of Space, North Korea’s New Launch Site, and The Physics of Space Security. He also has testified before Congress on arms control issues and is frequently cited by the New York Times, NPR, and other news organizations.

Since 1990, he has been a primary organizer of the International Summer Symposiums on Science and World Affairs, which foster cooperation among scientists around the world working on arms control and security issues. In 2001, he was a co-recipient of the American Physical Society’s Joseph A. Burton Forum Award for his arms control research and his work with international scientists.

Before joining UCS in 1992, Dr. Wright was a senior research analyst with the Federation of American Scientists and served as an SSRC-MacArthur fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. He received his doctorate degree in physics from Cornell University in 1983 and worked as a research physicist from 1983 to 1988.


David Wright's Selected Publications

Wright D. 2012. What Does North Korea’s Planned Rocket Launch Mean? CNN’s Global Public Square, December 4.

Wright D. 2012. Underestimated or Overestimated: North Korea’s Launch in Perspective. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, December 13.

Wright D, Gronlund L. 2009. Technical flaws in the Obama missile defense plan. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, September 23.

Wright D. 2008. Chinaʼs kinetic energy anti-satellite test. Harvard Asia Pacific Review 9.2: 32-34.

Wright D. 2007. Space debris. Physics Today 60(10): 35-40.

Wright D, Postol TA. 2009. A post-launch examination of the Unha-2. Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, June 29.

Wright D, Grego L, Gronlund L. 2005. The Physics of Space Security: A Reference Manual.  American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Cambridge, MA

Sessler A, Gronlund L, Wright D, et al. 2000. Countermeasures: A Technical Evaluation of the Operational Effectiveness of the Planned US National Missile Defense System. Union of Concerned Scientists and MIT Security Studies Program, Cambridge, MA


We Need Your Support
to Make Change Happen

We can protect consumers, the climate, and our environment from the growing costs and risks of our oil use —but not without you. Your generous support helps develop science-based solutions for a healthy, safe, and sustainable future.