Ploughshares Fund

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The Ploughshares Fundhas, since 1981, led and supported a community of experts, advocates and analysts to implement smart strategies to seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons.

As a publicly supported foundation, it have raised over $80 million to "fund the smartest people with the best ideas".

"We’ve leveraged the impact of those funds with our own advocacy, connections, media profile and leadership. Combining high-level advocacy, an enhanced grantmaking capacity and our own expertise, we are enhancing global security. 100% Impact

100% of every dollar donated to Ploughshares Fund goes directly to the world’s smartest and most effective individuals and organizations, thanks to the generous contributions of our Board of Directors and administrative support from our endowment.

Goals and strategy

Ploughshares Fund is a publicly funded nonprofit foundation that "believes nuclear weapons pose a unique challenge to global security. By far the most destructive weapons on Earth, the use of nuclear weapons by accident, malice or design threatens mass destruction. Even unused, however, their terrible power disrupts the international systems meant to preserve order and stability."

Ploughshares Fund seeks to reduce and ultimately eliminate the threat posed by nuclear weapons. "To that end, we partner with the most promising efforts and smartest individuals in the U.S. and abroad seeking and implementing new and innovative solutions to this international problem".

But, it’s not enough to want change. Our approach focuses on finding and creating pressure points where our funding can push change over the edge. Through consultation with partners, grantees and our own expertise, we have carefully determined the strategic areas where believe our funding has the most chance of making a difference. Within these areas of focus, we have developed a three-pronged investment strategy meant to maximize our resources and impact.

Areas of focus

Encourage Concrete Steps to Reduce the World’s Largest Stockpiles. The United States and Russia still hold 95% of the world’s nuclear weapons. Pushing reductions forward in these two countries lessens the chance of nuclear accidents and brings other nuclear armed countries into negotiations.
Prevent the Emergence of New Nuclear States. Preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear-armed nation and rolling back the North Korean nuclear program are critical elements in our efforts to stop further proliferation of nuclear weapons.
Promoting Stability in Regions with Nuclear Weapons. To stop a nuclear arms race and a nuclear war, we must address the root causes of conflict. We work in regions where nuclear weapons exist (or may transit) to reduce and prevent conflicts that could spur the use of a nuclear weapon.

Investment strategy

Venture Investments. By identifying and funding individuals and organizations with fresh innovative perspectives and different backgrounds, we help new ideas take root and make our community more successful.
Capacity Building. By investing and growing the capacity of established individuals and organizations, we ensure that the most talented experts remain in the field and continue to move our long-term agenda.
Impact Campaigns. Using our own expertise and tapping into the networks we have built, we are able to organize campaigns targeted at a short-term policy goal that will yield long term pay-offs.
Each investment strategy feeds into the other and multiplies all our efforts, maximizing our ability to achieve our three primary goals.


IPS connection


The Ploughshares Fund is a partner organization of the Institute for Policy Studies.[2]

Enabling the START Treaty

Ploughshares claims credit for helping to achieve the New START treaty;[3]

Against overwhelming odds we helped strengthen U.S. security by winning the New START treaty to reduce U.S. and Russian nuclear arms. We can build momentum for further cuts by generating ideas to overcome obstacles on issues like missile defense and tactical nuclear weapons.


Board of Directors as at December 2012[4]

  • Roger Hale, Chairman, Former President and CEO, Tennant Co.
  • Reza Aslan, Author, No god but God: The Origins, Evolution and Future of Iran
  • Gail Seneca, Retired CEO, Seneca Capital and Luminent Capital
  • Admiral Joe Sestak, Retired Admiral and Former Congressman


As of December 2012;[5]

Arms Control Association

The Arms Control Association was founded in 1971 and is based in Washington, D.C. The Association claims to be a national nonpartisan membership organization, dedicated to promoting public understanding of and support for effective arms control policies. As at March 19, 2010, Ploughshares Fund was funding the Arms Control Association.

External links