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NTI Nuclear Security Index

NTI Nuclear Security Index logo

Building a framework for assurance, accountability and action

If a nuclear terrorist attack occurred in Tokyo or Tel Aviv, in Jakarta or New York, what would we wish we had done to prevent it? The NTI Index can help spark needed action to prevent this catastrophe. See the index at www.ntiindex.org.

  • The international panel assisted NTI and the EIU to develop the initial framework for nuclear materials security. The international panel assisted NTI and the EIU to develop the initial framework for nuclear materials security.

The NTI Nuclear Security Index is a first-of-its-kind public benchmarking of nuclear materials security conditions on a country-by-country basis in 176 countries.  Initially launched in 2012, the NTI Index, prepared with the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), helped spark international discussions about priorities required to strengthen security and most important, is encouraging governments to provide assurances and take actions to reduce risks.

The project draws on NTI’s nuclear expertise and the EIU’s experience in constructing indices, and the reach of the EIU's global network analysts and contributors. NTI—working with an international panel of nuclear security experts and a number of technical advisors—focused on the framework and priorities that define effective nuclear materials security conditions. The EIU was responsible for developing the Excel-based model and gathering the data.

The 2016 NTI Index assesses the contribution of 24 states with one kilogram or more of weapons-usable nuclear materials towards improved global nuclear materials security conditions, using five categories: 1) Quantities and Sites 2) Security and Control Measures 3) Global Norms 4) Domestic Commitments and Capacity and 5) Risk Environment.  An additional 151 states, with less than one kilogram of material or none at all, are assessed on the last three of these categories.  This "theft ranking" was included in the 2012 and 2014 editions of the NTI Index.

For the first time, the 2016 NTI Index also looks at a third set of countries in a new "sabotage ranking." An act of sabotage against a nuclear facilitiy could result in a significant radiological release with consequences on the same or larger scale as the accident at Fukushima. The new sabotage assessment reviews the nuclear security conditions of 45 countries with respect to the protection of nuclear facilities against sabotage. 

The NTI Index includes three elements:

  • The print report with NTI findings and recommendations, a complete discussion of the EIU methodology, and selected data.
  • A web site at www.ntiindex.org with high-level results in an easily accessible format, including all country summaries.
  • A downloadable version of the NTI Index, available through the website, with complete results and data and extended interactive features, in an Excel format.

This project is co-led by Page Stoutland, vice president, nuclear materials program and Samantha Pitts-Kiefer, senior program officer. NTI thanks the funders who have supported this project, including the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Peter G. Peterson Foundation.

Partner Organizations

Economist Intelligence Unit

The NTI Index was developed with the Economist Intelligence Unit, one of the foremost research and analysis resource in the world. Founded in 1946 as an in-house research unit for The Economist, EIU delivers trusted business intelligence and advice.

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the Nuclear Threat

Reducing the risk of nuclear use by terrorists and nation-states requires a broad set of complementary strategies targeted at reducing state reliance on nuclear weapons, stemming the demand for nuclear weapons and denying organizations or states access to the essential nuclear materials, technologies and know-how.

In Depth