Peter Berkowitz

Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow
Awards and Honors:

Peter Berkowitz is the Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. In 2019-2021, he served as the Director of the State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, executive secretary of the department's Commission on Unalienable Rights, and senior adviser to the Secretary of State. He is a 2017 winner of the Bradley Prize. At Hoover, he is a member of the Military History/Contemporary Conflict Working Group. In addition, he serves as dean of studies for the Public Interest Fellowship, and teaches for the Tikvah Fund in the United States and in Israel.

He studies and writes about, among other things, constitutional government, conservatism and progressivism in the United States, liberal education, national security and law, and Middle East politics.

He is the author of Constitutional Conservatism: Liberty, Self-Government, and Political Moderation (Hoover Institution Press, 2013); Israel and the Struggle over the International Laws of War (Hoover Institution Press, 2012); Virtue and the Making of Modern Liberalism (Princeton University Press, 1999); and Nietzsche: The Ethics of an Immoralist (Harvard University Press, 1995).

He is the editor of seven collections of essays on political ideas and institutions published by the Hoover Institution: Renewing the American Constitutional Tradition (2014); Future Challenges in National Security and Law (2010); The Future of American Intelligence (2005); Terrorism, the Laws of War, and the Constitution: Debating the Enemy Combatant Cases (2005); Varieties of Conservatism in America (2004); Varieties of Progressivism in America (2004); and Never a Matter of Indifference: Sustaining Virtue in a Free Republic (2003).

He is a contributor at RealClearPolitics, and has written hundreds of articles,essays and reviews on a range of subjects for a variety of publications, including The American InterestAmerican Political Science ReviewThe AtlanticThe Chronicle of Higher EducationClaremont Review of BooksCommentaryFirst ThingsForbes.comHaaretzThe Jerusalem PostLondon Review of BooksNational JournalNational ReviewThe New CriterionThe New RepublicPolicy ReviewPoliticoThe Public InterestThe Times Literary SupplementThe Wall Street JournalThe Washington PostThe Weekly StandardThe Wilson Quarterly, and the Yale Law Journal.

In addition to teaching regularly in the United States and Israel, Dr. Berkowitz has led seminars on the principles of freedom and the American constitutional tradition for students from Burma at the George W. Bush Presidential Center and for Korean students at Underwood International College at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea.

He taught constitutional law and jurisprudence at George Mason University School of Law from 1999 to 2006, and political philosophy in the department of government at Harvard University from 1990 to 1999.

He holds a JD and a PhD in political science from Yale University, an MA in philosophy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and a BA in English literature from Swarthmore College.

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Recent Commentary


Securing Freedom For The Middle Class, And All Americans

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Sunday, April 4, 2021

If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then President Biden’s professed commitment to conduct a foreign policy that concentrates on advancing the interests of the nation’s working families and middle class pays a striking compliment to his predecessor. 

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U.S. Foreign Policy Strategy in the Indo-Pacific

interview with Bill Hagerty, Peter Berkowitzvia Hoover Podcasts
Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Bill Hagerty and Peter Berkowitz discuss U.S. Foreign Policy Strategy in the Indo-Pacific on Wednesday, March 24 at 3:30 PM Eastern.


Bolstering The Abraham Accords Through Education Initiatives

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Sunday, March 21, 2021

Last September, energetic Trump administration diplomacy brought Bahrain’s foreign minister, the United Arab Emirates’ foreign minister, and Israel’s prime minister to the White House to sign and to celebrate the Abraham Accords. The agreements offer unprecedented opportunities for the parties to the accords, for the broader region, and for the international order. Over the last seven months, the focus has been on cooperation in national security and commerce. That’s understandable. 


Peter Berkowitz: American Conservatism Flourishes In The Age Of Woke (Part 2)

interview with Peter Berkowitzvia The John Batchelor Show
Thursday, March 18, 2021

Hoover Institution fellow Peter Berkowitz discusses his Real Clear Politics article "Conflating Criticism and Cancellation."


Peter Berkowitz: Cancel Culture Sells Books (Part 1)

interview with Peter Berkowitzvia The John Batchelor Show
Thursday, March 18, 2021

Hoover Institution fellow Peter Berkowitz discusses his Real Clear Politics article "Conflating Criticism and Cancellation."


Conflating Criticism And Cancellation

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Sunday, March 14, 2021

Liberal democracy -- grounded in the “inalienable” rights all human beings share -- protects, and is protected by, free speech. Good laws alone, though, cannot keep speech free. Also necessary is a public culture that promotes an accurate understanding of free speech and fosters the virtues that undergird it. The breakdown in the United States of that public culture -- particularly among the nation’s progressive elites -- is of pressing concern.


Crisis, Resilience, And American Conservatism

by Peter Berkowitzvia Real Clear Politics
Sunday, February 28, 2021

In the weeks since Donald Trump departed the White House -- and during the four years he resided there – we were constantly told that conservatism is in crisis. Then again, crisis seems to be a recurring condition for conservatism, or, more precisely, for the American conservative movement. By and large, these crises have proved fertile. 

Lessons From The Hoover Policy Boot CampFeatured

Socialism Vs. Capitalism

by Peter Berkowitzvia PolicyEd
Thursday, February 25, 2021

Peter Berkowitz discusses the differences between two economic systems: socialism and capitalism.


Peter Berkowitz On The John Batchelor Show

interview with Peter Berkowitzvia The John Batchelor Show
Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Hoover Institution fellow Peter Berkowitz discusses his Newsweek article "The Biden Administration and the China Challenge."


The Biden Administration And The China Challenge

by Peter Berkowitzvia Newsweek
Monday, February 22, 2021

On Feb. 4, in his first foreign-policy speech as president of the United States, Joe Biden caricatured Trump administration diplomacy as an abject failure—destructive of American interests and contrary to American ideals. At the same time, Biden gave unwitting recognition to former secretary of state Mike Pompeo's signature achievement, which was to reorient American foreign policy toward the challenge presented by the People's Republic of China (PRC).