Maaike Verbruggen

Maaike Verbruggen

PhD Researcher International Security

CV

Maaike Verbruggen is a Doctoral Researcher at the International Security Cluster. She specializes in Emerging Military Technologies, Military Innovation, and Arms Control. For her PhD she researches the enablers of and obstacles to Military Innovation in Artificial Intelligence.

The cross-cutting issues fascinate her. Why have humans been obsessed with Artificial Intelligence for nine decades, and why do we keep on not achieving our goals? How will the Fourth Industrial Revolution affect arms acquisition, production, diffusion and diversion? How do states try to keep a grip on defence innovation, in a time where transnational civilian companies are at the forefront of innovation? What are the implications of the convergence between different technological logics? How do emerging military technologies change the environmental impact of warfare? How do different arms control regimes deal with changes in Science & Technology? How does this impact disparate actors and countries differently? How has this changed over time, and what can we learn from the Industrial Revolution? As a result, she is engaged with a wide range of military technologies, from surveillance technologies to Small Arms and Light Weapons, and from conventional weapons to Weapons of Mass Destruction. She works with a variety of theoretical approaches, and is especially interested in identifying those mundane boring factors that are much more important than our theoretical models would imply.

Maaike Verbruggen has a BA in History and a BSc in Sociology from the Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen (the Netherlands), and a MPhil in Peace and Conflict Studies from Universitetet i Oslo (Norway).

She has experience working on military innovation, arms trade, export controls, arms control and disarmament. Previously, she worked at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI); and she interned at the Department of Arms Control, Non-Proliferation, Disarmament and Export Controls at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and at the Information and Outreach Branch at the United Nations Office of Disarmament Affairs (UNODA).

Follow Maaike on Twitter and Linkedin.

Activities

Publications

Verbruggen, M., "AI and Military Procurements: What computers still can't do"War on the Rocks (5 May 2020).

Verbruggen, M., "Beyond the Buzz: A Primer on Swarms", The Interpreter (29 April 2020).

Verbruggen, M., "The extensive role of artificial intelligence in military transformation," in: Topychkanov, P. (ed.), The Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Strategic Stability and Nuclear Risk: Volume III South Asian Perspectives, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (April 2020). 

Verbruggen, M., "The question of swARMS CONTROL: Challenges to ensuring human control over military swarms," EU Non Proliferation and Disarmament Consortium Papers, no. 65 (December 2019).

Boulanin, V., Davis, I. and Verbruggen, M. "The Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons and lethal autonomous weapon systems," in: SIPRI Yearbook 2019: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security (Oxford University Press: Oxford, 2019).

Verbruggen, M., "The question of swARMS CONTROL–Challenges to Ensuring Human Control over Military Swarms", paper presented at 'SCIENCE x PEACE x SECURITY' Darmstadt, 27 October 2019.

Verbruggen, M. “The Role of Civilian Innovation in the Development of Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems”, Global Policy, vol 10, issue 3 (2019). 

Verbruggen, M., "A historical overview of the evolving dynamic between the laws of war and military innovation," paper presented at the International Studies Association Annual Conference in Toronto, 29 March 2019.

Verbruggen, M., "Why is spin-in not yet a win-win? Obstacles to technology transfer of AI from the civilian to the military sector," paper presented at the International Studies Association annual conference in Toronto, 28 March 2019.

Davis, I. and Verbruggen, M., "The Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons," in SIPRI Yearbook 2018: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security (Oxford University Press: Oxford, 2018).

Verbruggen, M., "Why is spin-in not yet a win-win? Obstacles to technology transfer of autonomous technologies from the civilian to the military sector," paper presented at the European Initiative on Security Studies in Paris, 21 June 2018.

Verbruggen, M., "The flying sparks between civilian and military innovation in autonomy," paper presented at the European Workshop on International Studies in Groningen, 7 June 2018.

Verbruggen, M. and McLeish, C., "The CWC: the fourth Review Conference and beyond," Wilton Park WP1593 (Mar. 2018).

Boulanin, V. and Verbruggen, M., Article 36 reviews: Dealing with the challenges posed by emerging technologies (SIPRI: Stockholm, 2017).

Boulanin, V. and Verbruggen, M. "SIPRI Compendium on Article 36 Reviews," SIPRI Background Paper (November 2017).

Boulanin, V. and Verbruggen, M., Mapping the development of autonomy in weapon systems (SIPRI: Stockholm, 2017).

Hart, J., Verbruggen, M. and Maletta, G., “Actual use of chemical weapons in Syria,” in Literature Review for the Policy and Operations Evaluations Department of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (IOB: The Hague, 2017), pp. 79 - 92.

Boulanin, V. and Verbruggen, M., “The availability and military use of UAVs,” in Literature Review for the Policy and Operations Evaluations Department of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (IOB: The Hague, 2017), pp. 121 - 131.

Boulanin, V. and Verbruggen, M., “The development and discussion on LAWS,” in Literature Review for the Policy and Operations Evaluations Department of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs (IOB: The Hague, 2017), pp. 132 - 137.

Davis, I., Boulanin, V., Bromley, M., Grip, L. and Verbruggen, “Humanitarian arms control regimes: key developments in 2016,” in SIPRI Yearbook 2017: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security (Oxford University Press: Oxford, 2017).

Bromley, M. and Verbruggen, M., “The revision of the EU SALW Strategy: taking account of the changing security environment,” EU Non-Proliferation Consortium Brief, no. 18 (April 2017).

Bromley, M., Verbruggen, M. and Wezeman, S., “Transparency in arms transfers,”, in SIPRI Yearbook 2015: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security (Oxford University Press: Oxford, 2015).

Bromley, M. and Verbruggen, M., (2015), ‘The financial value of states’ arms exports’, in SIPRI Yearbook 2015: Armaments, Disarmament and International Security (Oxford University Press: Oxford, 2015).

Engagements

Speaking engagements

  • "Artificial Intelligence and International Security", guest lecture, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, 4 December 2019.
  • "Regulating Autonomy in Weapon Systems", presentation at the European Parliament, 3 December 2019.
  • "Robotics and Autonomous Systems: Is there a need for more Arms Control?", keynote speech at 'Managing RAS: The Need for New Norms and Arms Control', Clingendael/HCSS, The Hague, 13 November 2019.
  • "The implications of Autonomy in Weapon Systems for International Peace and Security", guest lecture, UNYA, Leuven, 12 November 2019.
  • "Obstacles to civil-to-military technology transfer”, presentation at 'Future of Transatlantic Defence Cooperation', Beyond the Horizon, Brussels, 22 October 2019.
  • "War by all Means: Integrated Warfare”, panel discussion at 'CyFy 2019 conference', Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi, 15 October 2019.
  • "Artificial Intelligence and the Future of EU Diplomacy", panel discussion, Vocal Europe, Brussels, 8 October 2019.
  • "What swarms still can't do", presentation at 'Technology and digitalization as forces of change', Southern Denmark University, Odense, 3 October 2019.
  • “The irrationality in European pursuit of AI”, presentation at ‘Artificial Intelligence & Autonomy in Warfare: The European approach’, European Council of Foreign Relations, London, 3 September 2019.
  • “Why is spin-in not yet a win-win?” presentation at the National Defence Univerity, Washington D.C., 16 May 2019.
  • “AI and Strategic Stability: USA, Europe and Japan,” presentation at ‘The Impact of Machine Learning and Autonomy on Strategic Stability and Nuclear Risk,’ Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Colombo, 25-26 February 2019.
  • “The geostrategic impacts of AI,” panel discussion at ‘The impact of AI on diplomacy and international relations,’ Diplo Foundation, Brussels, 28 January 2019.
  • “Regulation and control of autonomous weapons systems,” presentation at ‘Ethics Week,’ Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, 4 December 2018.
  • “Command and control of swarming,” presentation at ‘Autonomous and Cooperating: Swarms and Meaningful Human Control,’ UNIDIR side event at the United Nations Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons Meeting of High Contracting Parties, Geneva, 21-23 November 2018.
  • “Breaking out of the silos: The need for a whole-of-disarmament approach to Arms Control of AI,” presentation at ‘Beyond Killer Robots - Networked Artificial Intelligence Disrupting the Battlefield,’ University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, 15-16 November 2018.
  • “Europe and Chinese Military Innovation in AI”, presentation at the ‘Japan-Europe dialogue on controlling critical technology: policies and processes,’ European Council for Foreign Relations, Rome, 8-9 November 2018.
  • Emerging Technologies and the Impact of Software,” panel discussion at ‘Verification in Crisis - the Crisis of Verification. New Technology as a Hurdle to and an Enabler of Verification in Arms Control,’ Peace Research Institute Frankfurt Annual Conference, Frankfurt, 21-22 September 2018.
  • “Why is spin-in not yet a win-win? Obstacles to technology transfer of autonomous technologies from the civilian to the military sector,” paper presented at the ‘European Initiative for Security Studies,’ Paris, 21-22 June 2018.
  • The flying sparks between civilian and military innovation in autonomy,” paper presented at ‘New Technologies of Warfare: Implications of Autonomous Weapons Systems for International Relations,’ European Workshop for International Studies, Groningen, 7-8 June 2018.

Media Appearances

  • Shashank, J., “Autonomous weapons and the new laws of war,” the Economist, 17 Jan 2019. Link.
  • Hem, M., “Våpen strømmer til Midtøsten”, VG, 21 Dec 2018. Link.
  • Satariano, A., “Will there be a ban on Killer Robots?,” New York Times, 19 Oct 2018. Link.
  • Chatila, R. and Tessier, C., “Armes létales autonomes: de quoi parle-t-on?,” CNRS Le Journal, 26 Dec 2017. Link.
  • Iglesias Fraga, A., “Armas autónomas: el nuevo temor global en la era posnuclear,” TICbeat, 24 Dec 2017. Link.
  • Azhar, A., “The future of autonomous weapons relies on public awareness,” Venture Beat, 28 Nov 2017. Link.