The nuclear industry is experiencing a multiple crisis in which economic, technical and ethical aspects are blended inextricably. Nuclear hardware costs have everywhere soared far beyond inflation in the last five years, largely as a result of delays in programme completion arising from problems of reactor and fuel cycle. Meanwhile, partly as a result of this cost escalation, there is widespread and growing doubt as to whether capital will be available to finance the electricity generating levels projected by the industry and by governments for the 1990s. The nuclear industry is now in trouble at every stage of the fuel cycle. The industry's difficulties have also revealed a lack of overall - but particularly nuclear - energy strategy at either national or international levels, and a lack of will to create regulations and institutional machinery at either of these levels which might reassure both concerned publics and the energy industries themselves. This paper appraises some of the present limitations of international institutions in achieving control and management of nuclear power.