About Us

The Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control conducts research and advocacy to stem the spread of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction.

The Wisconsin Project is a private, non-profit, non-partisan organization in Washington, D.C. founded in cooperation with the University of Wisconsin. The organization’s work is guided by the idea that the best way to stop the proliferation of mass destruction weapons is to do so at the source: to cut off the supply of material, equipment and technology needed to make these weapons. To that end, the Project uncovers and publicizes dangerous export transactions and works directly with countries to improve their export control systems. The Wisconsin Project was established in 1986 by now-Emeritus Professor Gary Milhollin. Ms. Valerie Lincy, who joined the Project in 2003, was named Executive Director in 2012.

As a result of the Project’s research and revelations in the press, Israel was forced to return nuclear material it had imported for improper purposes from Norway, Germany overhauled and strengthened its export control system, the U.S. Congress tightened restrictions on the sale of American supercomputers, and the U.S. Commerce Department restricted trade with 63 organizations in Pakistan and India following those countries’ nuclear weapon tests. The United States, the United Nations and the European Union also used the Project’s research to identify Iranian entities linked to nuclear and missile work whose assets should be frozen.

The Project has also provided direct assistance to U.S. and foreign government agencies to help them improve their export controls. In cooperation with the U.S. Defense and State Departments, the Project has trained thousands of export control officials in some 40 countries around the world. This initiative began in 1998, with countries in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. It since has expanded to include countries in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia, including countries of concern for transshipment and diversion.

The Risk Report database and the Iran Watch website are the Wisconsin Project’s two principal programs.

The Risk Report is a leading source of unclassified information on companies around the world suspected of links to weapons of mass destruction programs or to terrorism. The Risk Report is a subscription database first produced in 1995 that is used by governments for end use screening, risk management, and investigations, and by companies for supply chain and transaction screening. Iran Watch is a comprehensive web site that tracks Iran’s ability to construct nuclear and chemical weapons and the missiles to deliver them. Iran Watch was launched in 2004 and contains thousands of pages of official documents about Iran’s WMD programs, as well as analysis by the Wisconsin Project.

The Wisconsin Project receives support through grants from the U.S. government and private foundations. Read more about our funding history here.