Dr. Ottawa Sanders is a nonresident senior fellow with the Forward Defense practice at the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. She focuses on nuclear weapons, emerging defense technology, and East Asia. Her research is interdisciplinary and draws from international relations theory and social psychology.

Her current research lies at the intersection of nuclear weapons proliferation and artificial intelligence (AI). She is particularly interested in analyzing the incentives driving the weaponization of AI among minor powers. Previously, Sanders was a post-doctoral research fellow at Brookings Institution. Before that, she was an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland’s Department of Government and Politics, where she designed and taught a course on the politics of nuclear weapons proliferation.

Sanders has a doctoral degree from Indiana University; masters’ degrees from the University of Birmingham (United Kingdom) and Binghamton University; and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan. She previously worked as an intern for Bev Desjarlais, a former member of parliament in Canada. She also served as a congressional intern for former US Representative Elijah E. Cummings.