Joseph Felter

Research Fellow / National Security Affairs Fellow 2008-2009
Biography: 

Joe Felter is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution and William J. Perry Fellow at the Center for International Security and Cooperation.

From 2017 to 2019, Felter served as US deputy assistant secretary of defense for South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Oceania. There he was the principal advisor for all policy matters pertaining to development and implementation of defense strategies and plans in the region and responsible for managing bilateral security relationships and guiding Department of Defense (DoD) engagement with multilateral institutions.  

At Stanford, Felter is codirector of the Empirical Studies of Conflict Project and coauthor of Hacking for Defense, a defense innovation­–focused academic curriculum he helped develop and pilot at Stanford, sponsored by the DoD and taught at more than 30 universities across the country. His previous academic positions include director of West Point’s Combating Terrorism Center, assistant professor in the US Military Academy’s Department of Social Sciences, and adjunct associate professor at Columbia University’s School for International and Public Affairs. His research focuses on addressing politically motivated violence and has appeared in the American Economic Review, Journal of Political Economy, Journal of Development Economics, Journal of Conflict Resolution, and a range of other academic and policy-focused publications.  He is coauthor of Small Wars, Big Data: The Information Revolution and Modern Conflict (Princeton University Press, 2018). 

A former US Army Special Forces and Foreign Area officer, Joe served in a variety of special operations and diplomatic assignments across East and Southeast Asia. His combat deployments include Panama with the 75th Ranger Regiment, Iraq with a Joint Special Operations Task Force, and Afghanistan, where he commanded the COMISAF Counterinsurgency Advisory and Assistance Team, reporting directly to Generals Stanley McChrystal and David Petraeus.

Felter is founder and senior advisor at BMNT a Silicon Valley–based technology incubator and problem-solving platform named by Forbes magazine in 2016 as one of the nation’s top-25 veteran-founded start-ups. He served as a member of the Marines Memorial Board of Advisors and is currently a board member of Spirit of America, a nonprofit supporting the needs of US military members deployed overseas.

He received a BS from the US Military Academy at West Point, a masters in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, a graduate certificate in management from the University of West Australia, and a PhD in political science from Stanford University. He is a graduate of the Singapore Armed Forces Senior Service College and was a US Army War College Fellow at the Hoover Institution. 

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Recent Commentary

Featured

Joesph Felter: Biden’s Afghanistan Crisis: Forfeiting U.S. Investment In Critical Minerals To The Taliban

quoting Joseph Feltervia Republican Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources
Friday, October 22, 2021

Hoover Institution fellow Joseph Felter gives remarks before the Republican Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources and Oversight and Investigations on "Biden’s Afghanistan Crisis: Forfeiting U.S. Investment in Critical Minerals to the Taliban."

In the News

Stanford Experts Criticize Afghanistan Withdrawal, Call For Updated Counterterrorism Measures

featuring Joseph Felter, Amy Zegartvia Stanford Daily
Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Stanford policy experts offered sharp critiques of the United States’ military withdrawal from Afghanistan during a Tuesday panel. The three speakers on the panel described the late-August mass departure coordinated by American leaders as a “moral stain on the United States.”

Interviews

Joe Felter: Fears Of Afghanistan Economic Collapse

interview with Joseph Feltervia NewsNation Now
Friday, September 10, 2021

Hoover Institution fellow Joe Felter talks about Afghanistan.

Featured

Leaving Afghanistan: No Right Way To Do The Wrong Thing

by Joseph Feltervia The Los Angeles Times
Wednesday, September 1, 2021

The haunting image of a desperate Afghan man falling to his death from the fuselage of a departing U.S. C-17 military cargo plane will be forever burned in America’s collective consciousness and symbolic of our ignominious defeat after two decades in Afghanistan.

Matters of Policy & Politics
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Matters Of Policy & Politics: “The Slow Drift Back”

interview with Joseph Felter, Bill Whalenvia Matters of Policy & Politics
Monday, August 16, 2021

What went wrong in Afghanistan and the impact on US foreign policy.

Joe Felter On Countering China In Their Own Backyard

interview with Joseph Feltervia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, August 4, 2021

TRANSCRIPT ONLY

In this wide-ranging conversation, Dr. Felter discusses the ever growing threat to Taiwan from the People’s Republic of China and the state of preparedness for such a conflict in the United States and the West.

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Joe Felter On Countering China In Their Own Backyard

interview with Joseph Feltervia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, August 4, 2021

AUDIO ONLY

In this wide-ranging conversation, Dr. Felter discusses the ever growing threat to Taiwan from the People’s Republic of China and the state of preparedness for such a conflict in the United States and the West.
Blank Section (Placeholder)Featured

Joe Felter On Countering China In Their Own Backyard

interview with Joseph Feltervia Uncommon Knowledge
Wednesday, August 4, 2021

In this wide-ranging conversation, Dr. Felter discusses the ever growing threat to Taiwan from the People’s Republic of China and the state of preparedness for such a conflict in the United States and the West.

Featured CommentaryFeatured

Realism And Deterrence In Cross-Strait Relations

by Joseph Feltervia Strategika
Wednesday, June 30, 2021

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leadership has never felt more confident that its increasingly capable military could be deployed to successfully seize Taiwan by force. Decades of expanding defense budgets and investment in military modernization have significantly enhanced the CCP’s potential to project power across the Taiwan Strait.

The World Is Not Getting Safer

by Kori Schake, General Jim Mattis, Admiral James O. Ellis Jr., Joseph Feltervia Hoover Digest
Monday, April 26, 2021

Why the Biden administration needs to recommit the country to the defense of our allies.

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