Events & Activities

UK PONI offers a variety of educational and developmental opportunities for our members.

Explore upcoming and past events


UK PONI’s core programme of activities includes the following: 

Each year, we invite emerging experts to present their research and ideas to an audience of established members of the UK nuclear community at the UK PONI Annual Conference.  

Selected presenters have the opportunity to: 

  • Work with members of the UK PONI team and external mentors to refine their ideas and research. 
  • Undertake training to develop their presentation skills. 
  • Present their work to a broad audience of nuclear experts. 
  • Publish a short policy paper in RUSI’s annual edited volume,  the UK PONI Papers.  

Read past editions of the UK PONI Papers here.

The best presentations from the conference are put forward to the following year’s US PONI Capstone Conference, held at the U.S. Strategic Command in Omaha, Nebraska.

Introduction to Nuclear Policy: Each spring, UK PONI organises a workshop aimed at postgraduate students and early career professionals working in the nuclear technology field who have not yet had significant exposure to nuclear weapons policy issues, including those in academia, government, and industry.

Introduction to Nuclear Technology: Each autumn, UK PONI organises a workshop aimed at postgraduate students and early career professionals working in the nuclear policy field but without a scientific or technological background including those in academia, government and industry.

The UK PONI Christmas pub quiz in London is one of our members’ favourite annual traditions. The quiz brings members of our network together for a pub quiz to mark the end of the year. This event is always oversubscribed.

UK PONI works with international partners to organise international exchanges every year. These exchanges and site visits strengthen international cooperation and dialogue on nuclear policy and technology, facilitate cooperation between network participants, and help them share experience and expertise. 

Together with CSIS PONI, we organise a Bilateral Exchange to visit various nuclear sites both in the UK and in the US. Read a testimonial from a past participant here. 

UK PONI also sends a small mid-career delegation to take part in the Trilateral Nuclear Dialogues between the UK, France, and the United States. 

Previous exchanges have included visits to Lockheed Martin UK Ampthill, Sellafield, RAF Fylingdales, a tour of the UK nuclear deterrent, a visit to the Nevada test site, and discussions on nuclear policy at NATO HQ. 

All presenters at the annual conference receive support from experts who advise on their research projects. We also try to support writers for Nuclear Reactions by providing them with feedback from both internal experts at RUSI and members of our Board of Advisors. 

As a project centred around developing a community of emerging nuclear experts, UK PONI organises annual career fairs to provide networking opportunities for its members. We organise a careers fair at our annual conference, which is free to attend. A variety of UK-based organisations involved in the nuclear field will be present at the conference. 

During the COVID-19 lockdowns, UK PONI also organized weekly Nuclear Cafés, in which nuclear experts were invited to join informal discussions about current events, diversity in the nuclear field, career advice, and more. 

Over the course of the year, UK PONI also organises ad hoc events featuring speakers, topics, and opportunities relevant to current affairs and happenings within the nuclear field. Previous special events have included movie screenings, exclusive roundtables, skills-based workshops, and site visits to our sponsor organisations.

UK PONI sends an annual delegation to the CSIS PONI Capstone Conference at United States Strategic Command in Omaha, Nebraska. The conference features selected presentations from preceding US regional conferences and UK PONI Annual Conference and offers individuals an opportunity to present their work to senior leadership from across the nuclear enterprise. Those who present at the Capstone Conference will also be invited to publish a paper based on their presentation in a journal produced by the Center for Strategic and International Studies. 

Read here the reflections of a past participant.