Johnson, DavidDr. David Johnson is a senior researcher at the RAND Corporation. His work focuses on military innovation, joint operations, and strategy. Dr. Johnson is also an adjunct professor at Georgetown University where he teaches a course on strategy and military operations. From June 2012 until July 2014, he was on a two year loan to the United States Army to establish and serve as the first director of the Chief of Staff of the Army Strategic Studies Group.

Before joining RAND, he had a twenty-four year career in the U.S. Army, serving in command and staff positions in the Infantry, Quartermaster Corps, and Field Artillery branches. He retired as a Colonel in 1997.

He has MA and Ph.D. degrees in history from Duke University. He also has an MMAS from the U.S. Command and General Staff College, an MS from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, and a BA from Trinity University.

Dr. Johnson is the author or coauthor of numerous books, articles, and reports including:

  • Fast Tanks and Heavy Bombers: Innovation in the U.S. Army, 1917–1945
  • Learning Large Lessons: The Evolving Roles of Ground Power and Air Power in the Post–Cold War Era
  • Hard Fighting: Israel in Lebanon and Gaza
  • The 2008 Battle of Sadr City: Reimaging Urban Combat
  • “Fighting the ‘Islamic State The Case for US Ground Forces”
  • “The Challenges of the ‘Now and Their Implications for the U.S. Army”


He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

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