The Bloomberg 50: Beatrice Fihn

Issue 12-04-17   |   Reviewer:   Katherine Campbell, Ph.D.


Weapons of mass destruction are almost universally despised, and some, including chemical weapons, have been banned by international treaty. The International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) is working to eliminate nuclear weapons, arguably the ultimate weapon of mass destruction.

In the gray-haired, male-dominated world of arms control, Beatrice Fihn, a 34-year-old Swedish lawyer, may seem an unlikely leader for ICAN. Nevertheless, her youth and gender may be an advantage as a post-Cold War generation comes of age.  

Under Fihn's leadership, ICAN frames the nuclear weapons question in a way that appeals to those born in the post-Cold War era. In addition to humanitarian arguments, ICAN makes environmental and economic arguments, and counters pro-nuclear security arguments by describing nuclear weapons as antithetical to modern warfare.

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