Jonathan Schroden, Ph.D.
Research Program Director
Special Ops Research Coordinator


Jonathan Schroden directs the Stability and Development Program. Schroden is an expert on the Marine Corps, special operations forces, terrorism/counterterrorism, indigenous force development, security force assistance, foreign internal defense, insurgency/counterinsurgency, unconventional warfare, stability operations and operations assessment.

Since joining CNA in 2003, Schroden has deployed ten times to Afghanistan, twice to Iraq, and traveled extensively throughout the Middle East. He served as the CNA Field Representative to several Marine Corps commands, to U.S. Central Command, and to the International Security Assistance Force. Schroden has most recently directed multiple independent assessments of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces and a study of how to improve the integration of special operations forces and general purpose forces for crisis response. He has also deployed on numerous Navy ships and supported disaster relief operations in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

Schroden holds a Ph.D. and an M.S. from Cornell University and two B.S. degrees from the University of Minnesota-Duluth.


May 17, 2019

Jonathan Schroden writes, "The command is no longer primarily interested in counter-insurgency, but rather is now focused on making the Taliban bleed."

War on the Rocks: "Military Pressure and Body Counts in Afghanistan"

March 21, 2019

Jonathan Schroden writes, "Rather than railing against this situation — one over which it has no control and little influence — the Afghan government would be better off preparing to expeditiously address its own interests and costs in the second phase of negotiations."

War on the Rocks: "Weighing the Costs of War and Peace in Afghanistan"

January 31, 2019

Jon Schroden writes, “There is a collective sense of cautious optimism that something notable happened last week and that Afghanistan may have advanced on a path toward peace.”

War on the Rocks: “Getting Ahead of the Implications of a U.S.-Taliban Deal in Afghanistan”

January 9, 2019

Jonathan Schroden says, “I do see this trend of ‘by, with and through’ not just being applied in places where the government is very weak. The US wouldn’t be conducting direct military operations but it could certainly enable a partner nation force. If you look at Jordan or the UAE, they certainly have very capable forces.”

Al Monitor: ‘Congress Plans New Challenge to President’s War Powers Amid Syria Pullout”

January 7, 2019

Jonathan Schroden says, “From the data we gathered, we were able to recreate the paths of the submarines.”

Chemical and Engineering News: “Career Ladder: Jonathan Schroden”

December 27, 2018

Jonathan Schroden writes, “If the U.S. doesn’t want to cede influence in Africa over the next decade or two decades, it really does need to (think) differently about what its military has been doing in Africa over the last 10 years and what types of changes it needs to make.”

Star and Stripes: “African Air Forces Band Together Even as the Pentagon Scales Back Ground Mission”