In the early days of the new year, the famed Doomsday Clock moved one minute closer to midnight, indicating a worsening threat to mankind of nuclear armageddon and other disasters. The clock, maintained by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, is a widely watched sign of the world's vulnerability to man-made catastrophe, and this latest change moved the clock's hands from six to five minutes before midnight.

Just two years ago, the Bulletin had moved the hands from five to six minutes, signaling hope that the world was making serious efforts to tackle its problems. The 2012 move was made because "that trend has not continued or has been reversed," according to the Bulletin.

Kennette Benedict, the executive director and publisher of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, will join Commonwealth Club President and CEO Dr. Gloria C. Duffy for a members-only teleconference on February 9 to discuss the Bulletin's January 10 Doomsday Clock announcement, and how the public and media responded to the news that it now stands at 5 minutes to midnight. Benedict will also describe how her organization's board members and experts assessed current risks related to nuclear weapons, climate change, nuclear energy, and biosecurity at the 3rd Annual Doomsday Clock Symposium, which preceded the announcement.

From 1992-2005, Benedict directed the international peace and security program at the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. She also established and directed the foundation's initiative in the former Soviet Union from 1992-2002. Before joining the foundation in 1987, she taught at Rutgers University and at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Dr. Duffy was U.S. deputy assistant secretary of defense and special coordinator for cooperative threat reduction from 1993-1995. In this role, she negotiated agreements with former Soviet countries to dismantle their weapons of mass destruction, and she coordinated U.S. assistance to these countries to meet those goals.

Join these two security experts for this timely program. Members were sent information via email on how to access this members-only program.

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