This article reviews the motivations, strengths, and weaknesses of the Nuclear Security Summits (NSS), both procedurally and substantively. Nearly fifty world leaders met at the various NSS—2010, 2012, 2014, and 2016. The circumstances that provoked these meetings were unusual, if not unique, but innovations undertaken at the meetings in global summitry and global governance will likely endure. The meetings advanced nuclear security in important ways, but the nuclear security problem cannot be resolved. It will require ultimately a commitment by states, international organizations, and nonstate actors to continuous improvement. It may ultimately require leaders to return to the summit.

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