David A. Cooper, Ph.D.

Professor National Security Affairs
David A Cooper Faculty Image


David A. Cooper holds a tenured faculty appointment as The James V. Forrestal Professor of National Security Affairs. He previously served as Chair of the Department of National Security Affairs from 2010-2018. He teaches in the college's core and elective programs. His areas of expertise include nonproliferation, arms control and disarmament, weapons of mass destruction, multilateral negotiations and organizations, international relations theory, and U.S. foreign policy. He is a scholar-practitioner who served for almost two decades in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) where he held a career appointment in the Senior Executive Service (SES) including at the 2-star level.

Areas of Expertise

  • Deterrence
  • Foreign Policy
  • International Relations
  • National Security
  • Nuclear

Professional Highlights


Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction, National Defense University

Senior Research Fellow and Director of Education and Outreach

U.S. Africa Command

Interim Director for Outreach (J-9) and Director of Strategic Communication/Senior Executive Service (SES)

Office of the Secretary of Defense

Director of Nonproliferation Policy/Senior Executive Service (SES)

Office of the Secretary of Defense

Director for Strategic Arms Control Policy

Office of the Secretary of Defense

Senior Adviser for Nonproliferation Policy

Office of the Secretary of Defense

Adviser for European and Middle East Security Negotiations

Department of Defense

Presidential Management Intern


Ph.D., The Australian National University (ANU), Political Science and International Relations

M.I.A., School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), Columbia University, International Affairs

B.A., Oberlin College

C.V. or Resume

Research Contributions and Publications

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