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Quiz about International Atomic Energy Agency
Quiz about International Atomic Energy Agency

International Atomic Energy Agency Quiz


How much do you know about this international organization?

A multiple-choice quiz by Portobello. Estimated time: 5 mins.
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Author
Portobello
Time
5 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
281,930
Updated
Jul 23 22
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Tough
Avg Score
6 / 10
Plays
343
- -
Question 1 of 10
1. In what year was the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) founded? Hint


Question 2 of 10
2. Which of the following was NOT an original function of the IAEA? Hint


Question 3 of 10
3. Where are the headquarters of the IAEA located? Hint


Question 4 of 10
4. Which two bodies of the United Nations does the IAEA report to? Hint


Question 5 of 10
5. The IAEA and its Director General won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005. Who was the Director General? Hint


Question 6 of 10
6. Two states have withdrawn from the IAEA (one in 1994 and one in 2003.) Which two are they? Hint


Question 7 of 10
7. The IAEA originated in large part from the "Atoms for Peace" speech given by U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower to the United Nations General Assembly. When was this speech given? Hint


Question 8 of 10
8. Who was the first Director General of the IAEA? Hint


Question 9 of 10
9. The IAEA is made up of three main bodies. What are they? Hint


Question 10 of 10
10. If the IAEA finds a nation to be in serious breach of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, what is the strongest formal action it can take? Hint



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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. In what year was the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) founded?

Answer: 1957

The IAEA was created as an autonomous, independent organization on July 29, 1957. This does not really mean that the IAEA 'exists on its own' though - while it is not technically subordinate to any body of the United Nations, and derives its operating budget from direct levies on member states and voluntary contributions to its Technology Cooperation Fund, its real power stems from its close association with the United Nations Security Council.
2. Which of the following was NOT an original function of the IAEA?

Answer: Non-Proliferation Treaty compliance monitoring

This may seem somewhat surprising today, given that the majority of attention paid to the organization comes as a result of its monitoring and inspection responsibilities in countries suspected of being in violation of the Non-Proliferation treaty. However, the NPT was not signed until 1968, so the IAEA did not gain its watchdog role until later in its existence.

The original purpose of the organization was to facilitate the spread of civilian nuclear power. It still does a lot of that - those roles are just less glamorous or likely to be in the news than its roles concerning nuclear weapons.
3. Where are the headquarters of the IAEA located?

Answer: Vienna, Austria

The main headquarters are in Vienna, which is why a lot of diplomatic activity associated with the nuclear activities of certain "rogue" nations (especially Iran) takes place there.

There are also Regional Safeguards Offices in Toronto and Tokyo, and Liaison Offices in Geneva and Washington, D.C., as well as several laboratories around the world.
4. Which two bodies of the United Nations does the IAEA report to?

Answer: Security Council and General Assembly

It is important to note that this does not mean the IAEA "answers to" the Security Council or General Assembly. Rather, it literally sends reports to these U.N. bodies. Its reporting to the Security Council is of particular note, because this is one of the major channels by which action is taken against countries that are suspected of pursuing nuclear weapons in violation of the NPT. For instance, in the run up to the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, the inspections everyone was talking about were carried out by the IAEA, which reported their finding to the Security Council, which subsequently based its decisions in large part on those inspections.
5. The IAEA and its Director General won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005. Who was the Director General?

Answer: Mohamed el-Baradei

All of the listed answers are or have been Directors General of the IAEA. El-Baradei and the IAEA won the Nobel Peace Prize for their diplomatic efforts relating to Iran's nuclear program. This is quite noteworthy when one considers that the IAEA does not actually have any official diplomatic role.

This was largely the result of El-Baradei's institutional entrepreneurship; he essentially created a diplomatic role for himself in the considerable void in diplomatic relations between the U.S., Europe, and Iran. That is, since they were not really talking to each other, he acted as the go-between and fostered dialog that may very well not have otherwise taken place.
6. Two states have withdrawn from the IAEA (one in 1994 and one in 2003.) Which two are they?

Answer: North Korea and Cambodia

North Korea withdrew in 1994 and Cambodia dropped out in 2003.

North Korea dropped out in association with its 1994 announcement of intent to withdraw from the NPT. The NPT requires a country to give 90 days notice before dropping out, however, 89 days after announcing it would withdraw from the NT, North Korea announced that it was "suspending" its notice to withdraw and remained party to the NPT (this was in response to the 1994 "Framework Agreement" negotiated by the Clinton Administration.) However, there is no waiting period to withdraw from the IAEA, and so North Korea's suspension of withdrawal from the NPT did not automatically reinstate it in the IAEA - it was required to go through the process of rejoining the IAEA, and did not do so. Incidentally, when tensions about North Korea's nuclear program flared up again in 2004, North Korea "un-suspended" its notice of intent to withdraw from the NPT, arguing that it only needed to give one day's notice due to the 89 days of notice it had given in 1994. The IAEA General Conference disagreed, and the sanctions imposed on North Korea as a result of the 2004 confrontation were based in large part on this failure to fulfill the notification obligations of the NPT.

I do not know why Cambodia withdrew from the IAEA, as it continues to be party to the NPT and is not known to be pursuing nuclear weapons. It is possible that Cambodia just did not want to pay membership dues, as they are not scaled based on a country's GDP; the common factor among the fifty or so states that are not members is their generally low GDP. This would also be consistent with Cambodia's generally isolationist foreign policy.
7. The IAEA originated in large part from the "Atoms for Peace" speech given by U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower to the United Nations General Assembly. When was this speech given?

Answer: 1953

1953 was the only option in which Eisenhower was President. Harry Truman was president in 1947, John F. Kennedy in 1962, and Lyndon Johnson in 1968.

Eisenhower made nuclear issues a key element of his foreign policy. On the one hand, he advocated a massive nuclear deterrent as the foundation of his foreign policy. This was largely a repudiation of the Truman administration's commitment to conventional interventions throughout the world.

However, this was also the time in which nuclear power seemed to offer the promise of unlimited, virtually free energy. Eisenhower believed that this technology would be the foundation of peace throughout the world, and advocated the creation of a U.N. agency to facilitate the spread of peaceful nuclear technology.
8. Who was the first Director General of the IAEA?

Answer: W. Sterling Cole

W. Sterling Cole (of the United States) served one term as Director General from 1957 - 1961. Sigvard Eklund (of Sweden) served five terms from 1961 - 1981, and was followed by fellow Swede Hans Blix, who served four terms between 1981 - 1997. Blix subsequently served as the IAEA's chief inspector in Iraq until 2003, for which he gained considerable media attention. Mohamed El-Baredei's appointment was notable given his Egyptian nationality. This is generally considered to have increased the IAEA's legitimacy in the Arab and Muslim world.

Kurt Waldheim, an Austrian, was the fourth Secretary General of the United Nations. Helmuth Kohl was a Chancellor of Germany following reunification. Walter Mondale was Jimmy Carter's Vice President, and a last-minute candidate for the Senate from Minnesota following the death of Paul Wellstone in 2002.
9. The IAEA is made up of three main bodies. What are they?

Answer: Secretariat, General Conference, and Board of Governors

The IAEA's organizational structure is roughly analogous to that of the United Nations. The Secretariat is the professional and administrative body, acting as the organization's executive. The Director General is the head of the Secretariat. The General Conference serves roughly the same role in the IAEA as the General Assembly does in the U.N. The Board of Governors is roughly equivalent to the U.N. Security Council. Together, the Board and Conference fulfill the IAEA's legislative functions, with the Board having more power than the Conference.

Membership in the Conference is simple: every member state (there are currently 144, and all states that are members of the U.N. are eligible to join) has one seat and one vote.

The Board of Governors has more complicated rules of membership. There are 35 seats on the Board. 13 seats are chosen for one year terms by the outgoing Board. Ten of these 13 seats must come from the world's most advanced nuclear countries, and the other three must be chosen from the remaining states with nuclear technology. This ensures that the world's nuclear powers always have a seat on the Board. The remaining 22 seats are chosen for two year terms (i.e. 11 of these seats are chosen every other year) by the General Conference and must be representative of the following areas: North America, Latin America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, South East Asia, the Pacific, and the Far East. In practice then, the Board has both permanent and rotating members, which is similar to the Security Council, except that the permanent members are not explicitly named by statute and do not have veto power.
10. If the IAEA finds a nation to be in serious breach of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, what is the strongest formal action it can take?

Answer: refer the country to the U.N. Security Council

This is an important point to remember about international organizations in general: they don't have armies, countries do, and so their 'hard power' is virtually zero. The IAEA's power derives entirely from the extent to which states take the IAEA seriously and use the IAEA's reports as a basis for conducting their own foreign policy. By referring a country to the U.N. Security Council, the IAEA can in effect initiate the process of imposing sanctions on a non-compliant country, but it does not itself possess that power. Likewise with seizing a country's fissile material or dismantling its nuclear facilities: the IAEA's findings may well motivate countries to do that, but it cannot do that on its own.
Source: Author Portobello

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor trident before going online.
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