Milton Leitenberg was trained as a scientist and moved into the field of arms control in 1966. In 1968, Leitenberg was the first American recruited to work at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI). He was subsequently affiliated with the Swedish Institute of International Affairs and the Center for International Studies Peace Program at Cornell University, and he has been a Senior Research Associate at CISSM since 1989. His research is widely published; in the years since 1966 he has authored or edited a dozen books or book length studies, and published 180 journal papers, monographs, and book chapters. Among these are major portions of Tactical Nuclear Weapons, European Perspectives, SIPRI (Taylor and Francis, 1978); Great Power Intervention in the Middle East (edited, Pergamon Press, 1979); The Structure of Defense Industry: An International Survey (edited, Croom Helm, 1983); and The Wars in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos, 1945 - 1982: A Bibliographic Guide (ABC-Clio, 1984), a book of his selected studies on arms control, Rusting und Sicherheitspolitik (Nomos Verlag, 1986), and Soviet Submarine Operations in Swedish Waters 1980-1986 (Center for Strategic and International Studies, 1987).
Leitenberg''s research work is concentrated in three disparate areas of study: biological weapons; actual wars and conflicts of the past two decades, and the issue of international intervention in these; and the history of nuclear weapons between the U.S. and USSR between 1945 and 1995. CISSM published his major monograph Biological Weapons Arms Control in 1996.
With specific reference to Biological Weapons: a subject of particular current concern, Leitenberg''s academic training was in Biology and Chemistry and his first paper dealing with biological weapons was published in 1967. At SIPRI, he was a member of the team that produced the six-volume study, The Problem of Chemical and Biological Warfare, published between 1971 and 1973. Since 1992, he has published thirty papers in the area of biological weapons. Several of these papers concern the BW program of the former USSR and The Soviet Biological Weapons Program: A History was published by Harvard University Press in 2013. Leitenberg published two other recent books on the subject of biological weapons: "The Problem of Biological Weapons" (National Defense College, Stockholm, 2004) and "Assessing the Biological Weapons and Bioterrorism Threat" (US Army War College, December 2005).