Alexis Blanc

Alexis Blanc

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Major- International Relations

Alexis A. Blanc is a PhD candidate in the Department of Political Science at the George Washington University focusing on International Relations and Public Policy. Her research interests include nuclear weapons strategy and posture, ballistic missiles and crisis behavior, and military effectiveness. Alexis received an M.A. in Security Policy Studies from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, focusing on nuclear weapons proliferation trends and policy. She also received a B.A. from Washington State University in Political Science in 2006. She has worked at the Departments of Energy and Defense over the last decade, working on nuclear weapons policy, supply chain security, and advanced simulation and computing.


Current Research

Alexis’ dissertation examines the relationship between ballistic missiles and conflict. The early 1990s witnessed a profusion of studies warning about the potential pitfalls of the diffusion of ballistic missile technology. In the nearly three decades since, however, the preponderance of articles, books, and conferences have been devoted to the topic of how states can insulate and protect against the proliferation of missiles. Academic research has been largely silent regarding the question that should logically precede such analyses—specifically, what is the relationship between ballistic missile possession and use of force in international crises and conflicts? This dissertation will thus seek to answer three questions. First, does possession of conventionally-armed ballistic missiles increase the likelihood that a state will use force? Second, what are the strategic rationales for employing missiles (or intentionally not employing them) in conflicts? Third, does missile employment increase the likelihood of success in a conflict – i.e., what is the impact of missile use at both the tactical and strategic levels? These questions will be answered by conducting a quantitative analysis of international crises between 1946 and 2007 and by completing a historical analysis using secondary sources and examining all of the cases of missile use from 1944 through 2018.


M.A. in Security Policy, The George Washington University 
B.A. in Political Science, Washington State University University


Alexis A. Blanc, “The Impact of ‘Conventional’ Roadblocks on U.S.-Russian Stockpile Reductions,” Nuclear Scholars Initiative: A Collection of Papers from the 2011 Nuclear Scholars Initiative. Washington, DC: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2011.

Alexis A. Blanc and Bradley Roberts, “Nuclear Proliferation: A Historical Overview.” Document D-3447. Alexandria, Va.: Institute for Defense Analyses, 2008.