The Project on Nuclear Gaming (PoNG) is a multidisciplinary team formed by researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories.
PONG, led by the University of California, Berkeley, is one of a portfolio of Carnegie-funded projects aimed at understanding the impact of emerging technologies on strategic stability and nuclear risk reduction. The goals of the research project are threefold: 1) to raise understanding of nuclear deterrence and conflict escalation with an eye toward better informed scholarship; 2) to generate insights into the conditions that might contribute to stability and instability in the context of nuclear weapons optimized for specific military objectives; and 3) to develop game-based analytic and experimental tools for social science research and policy inquiry.
Our project involves three wargaming frameworks – a scenario-based discussion, table-top exercise, and an online video game named SIGNAL – to test the effects of varying military capabilities upon nuclear thresholds and escalation dynamics. In the process, we build a large-n dataset for quantitative analysis of game outcomes.