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I am an Associate Professor (with tenure) at the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government & Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University where I teach and perform research on a range of international security topics that consider the intersection of information technology and conflict. Specifically, my research program spans three topical areas – (1) the socio-cognitive context of cyber operations; (2) coordinated social subversion and the conduct of Internet-enabled political warfare; and (3) the impact of artificial intelligence and other emerging technologies on both of the above. I received my  PhD in Political Science from George Mason University's Schar School of Policy & Government and run the Digital Issues Discussion Group with Nadiya Kostyuk.

I am also co-author of a Routledge volume on international security and cyberspace – entitled Understanding Cyber Warfare: Politics, Policy and Strategy – with Brian Mazanec, the second edition of which was launched in 2023, and co-editor of a volume on information warfare in the age of cyber conflict. In November 2023, I published, with Benjamin Jensen and Scott Cuomo, a monograph on military innovation and artificial intelligence with Georgetown University Press entitled Information in War. I teach coursework on cyber security policy, law and conflict, as well as on international politics, strategic planning and American national security processes. 


My dissertation research focused on how countercultural non-state actors use information and communications technologies (ICT) in the digital age. Specifically, I focused on a type of actor that has received surprisingly little attention by scholars - subversive non-state actors - and asked why some subversive groups choose to “keep one foot in the shadows” and make use of ICT for illicit purposes even after a clear transition in emphasis to strategies of digital activism.

I am also involved in a range of research projects investigating different elements of global cyber conflict, including domestic political outcomes of conflictual interactions online, the nature of power in the information age and the determinants of non-state actor information operations. I am currently partnered with several research partners at universities across the United

States, including on projects to study decision-making among national security elites using war gaming methods and to use machine learning methods to better detect and deter extreme influence campaigns.

Christopher Whyte


My research on cyberspace, information technology and international security has been published or is forthcoming in International Studies Quarterly, Terrorism & Political ViolenceStudies in Conflict and Terrorism, Journal of CybersecurityJournal of Cyber PolicyNew Media & SocietyContemporary Security PolicyInternational Studies ReviewPolitics and Governance, Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), OrbisComparative Strategy and Strategic Studies Quarterly, and my commentary has appeared in World Politics Review, The National Interest, Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, Foreign Policy, CSO Online, CPO Magazine, Dark Reading, Hackernoon and Diplomat.


In addition to my doctorate, I have previously been granted an MA in Political Science from George Mason University and a BA in International Relations and Economics from the College of William & Mary. I have worked for several national security think tanks, including Cato Institute and Center for a New American Security, and am currently both an adjunct faculty member at American University's School of International Service and a WSD-Handa non-resident fellow with Pacific Forum CSIS.

Understanding Cyber-Warfare v4.tiff

My research addresses the complex interaction of disruptive information technologies with traditional national and international security phenomena. My broad view of this interaction is cybernetic, meaning that technology is not neutral but rather both shapes and is shaped by sociopolitical context. As such, my work rarely focuses purely on the technical character of emergent technologies or on the prima facie utility thereof for security actors. Instead, my scholarship examines the informational context within which these technologies are encountered by decision-makers and by the general public. Through this approach to the study of issues of control, communication, and feedback in the interaction of human and machine systems, I aim to provide valuable insights into the evolving nature of security threats in the 21st century. 


Oxford University Press, 2024

Georgetown University Press, 2024

Routledge, 2018

Routledge, 2023

Routledge, 2020

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