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Joseph R. Stainback

Fellow, Global Security Policy Program

Research Associate Professor, Nuclear Engineering Department

PhD, Industrial Engineering, University of Tennessee


Dr. Joseph R. Stainback, IV is a research associate professor at the University of Tennessee, Nuclear Engineering Department and with UT’s Institute of Nuclear Security (INS). Since retiring from Department of Energy’s nuclear programs in 2013, he has focused on five principal thematic areas within the Nuclear (Security) Industry namely policy, law and diplomacy; education and training; science and technology; operational and intelligence capabilities; and real world missions, while taking a systems engineering approach to these matters. Dr. Stainback works closely with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge Associated Universities and the Y-12 National Security Complex. He teaches a course in Human Reliability within the Department of Nuclear Engineering’s graduate certificate program in Nuclear Security Science and Analysis (NSSA).

Dr. Stainback has acquired over 28 years of manufacturing, project management and program management experience with Babcock & Wilcox (B&W) with direct project management responsibilities for several significant transformation projects, including relocation of a major nuclear operation and consolidation of special nuclear materials at the Y-12 National Security Complex. During his tenure at Y-12, he won five US Department of Energy (DOE) Defense Programs Awards of Excellence associated with these programmatic responsibilities. Dr. Stainback’s B&W experience prior to 2004 was with its Nuclear Operations Division in Lynchburg, Virginia where he obtained extensive nuclear component manufacturing experience with the US Naval Reactors Program and oversaw the design, construction, and turnover of numerous post-9/11 multi-million dollar facilities. Dr. Stainback’s most recent assignment was the director of Global Security Initiatives at the Y-12 National Security Complex where he directed the provision of emerging mission (work for others) solutions associated with protecting domestic and international assets by leveraging Y-12’s core competencies through its resources—personnel and infrastructure— in the field of safeguards, security, international transparency, and nuclear nonproliferation, including matters associated with weapons of mass destruction.

Research Interests

Human Reliability, Work Place Violence, Espionage, Sabotage, Petty Crime, Insider Threat, Malicious Mischief and Unethical Behavior

Selected Presentations and Publications

Stainback IV, Joseph R., “A University Semester Course Design in Human Reliability in Nuclear Systems”, Institute of Nuclear Materials Management Conference Proceedings (2014), Atlanta, GA.

Stainback IV, Joseph R., Toth, William J., “Human-Complex System Interactions and Complacency within High Consequence Facilities”, Institute of Nuclear Materials Management Conference Proceedings (2013), Palm Desert, CA.

Hall, Sumner, Icenhour, Clark, Stainback, Robinson, Abelquest, Garrison, Fore, “Education and Training the Next Generation of Nuclear Security Experts”, The European Forum to discuss Nuclear Technology Issues, Opportunities & Challenges 9 -12 December 2012, Manchester, United Kingdom.

Stainback IV, J.R., Reynolds, R., Pederson, A., “Mechanisms to Strengthen the Department of Energy’s Human Reliability Program by Adopting a Continuous Assessment Program (CAP)”, Institute of Nuclear Materials Management Conference Proceedings (2012), Orlando, FL.

Stainback IV, J.R. & Thakur, K. “The Benefits of Field Training in Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Education.” Institute of Nuclear Materials Management Conference Proceedings (2011).

Stainback IV, J.R. (2011) Paper: “A New Lean Model: Improving Race Team Performance through Team-Driver Communication Efficacy”, Submitted and presented at the Institute of Industrial Engineers Annual Conference – Reno, NV.

Complete Bio here:


Contact Information

Dr. Joe Stainback
Dept. of Nuclear Engineering
Knoxville, TN 37996-0410
865-719-8923 (cell)

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