Cristina Garafola (she/her) is a policy researcher at the RAND Corporation. Her research focuses on the ramifications of China’s rise for its global status, particularly with respect to defense issues, China’s influence on regional actors, and implications for the United States. Garafola served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense from 2017 to 2019, where she focused on National Defense Strategy and Indo-Pacific strategy implementation. She has also worked at the Department of the Treasury, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and the Department of State. She is the co-author of the book "70 Years of the People’s Liberation Army Air Force" (2021), published by the China Aerospace Studies Institute. Her work has been published by RAND, the China Maritime Studies Institute, and in Asian Security, the Journal of Strategic Studies, War on the Rocks, and the Jamestown Foundation’s China Brief.
Garafola holds an M.A. in China studies from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), a graduate certificate from the Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies, and a B.A. in international relations and Chinese from Hamilton College. She has experience living and working in China and has also spent time in Myanmar (Burma) and Japan. She speaks Chinese.
Kenneth W. Allen and Cristina L. Garafola, 70 Years of the PLA Air Force, China Aerospace Studies Institute, 2021
Cristina L. Garafola, "The PLAAF at War During the Cold War," Vortex: Studies on Air and Space Power, (5), 2023
Cristina L. Garafola, The PLA Airborne Corps in a Joint Island Landing Campaign, China Maritime Studies Institute, 2022
Michael S. Chase, Cristina L. Garafola, and Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga, "Chinese Perceptions of and Responses to U.S. Conventional Military Power," Asian Security, 2017
Cristina L. Garafola, "The Evolution of the PLA Air Force’s Mission, Roles and Requirements," in Joe McReynolds, ed., China’s Evolving Military Strategy, Jamestown Foundation, 2016
Michael S. Chase and Cristina L. Garafola, "China’s Search for a 'Strategic Air Force'," Journal of Strategic Studies, 2015