Thomas S. Szayna

tom szayna, thomas szayna, s0191
Director, Defense and Political Sciences Department; Senior Political Scientist
Santa Monica Office


M.A. in international relations, Claremont Graduate School; B.A. in history and philosophy, Villanova University

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Thomas S. Szayna is the research department director of the Defense and Political Sciences Department and a senior political scientist at the RAND Corporation; he is also a member of the Pardee RAND Graduate School faculty. He has more than 25 years of experience in national security policy and defense analysis.

From 1997 to 2011 he served as associate director of the Strategy, Doctrine, and Resources Program in RAND's Army Research Division. His research has focused on aspects of strategic planning for the U.S. armed forces, post-conflict stability and reconstruction operations, and coalition interoperability. He gave testimony for the U.S. House of Representatives and has been a keynote speaker at a number of defense conferences.

Szayna received a B.A. in history and philosophy from Villanova University and an M.A. in international relations from Claremont Graduate School.

Recent Projects

  • Conflict Trends and Propensity for U.S. Intervention
  • Enabling an Efficient and Effective Global SOF Network
  • Assessing the Value of Regionally Aligned Forces in Army Security Cooperation
  • Assessing the Speed of Change
  • Boots on the Ground and Dwell Time for Army Forces: Implications on Unit Effectiveness, Training, and Soldier Well-Being

Selected Publications

Michael J. McNerney, Angela O'Mahony, Thomas S. Szayna, Derek Eaton, Caroline Baxter, Colin P. Clarke, Emma Cutrufello, Michael McGee, Heather Peterson, Leslie Payne, Calin Trenkov-Wermuth, Assessing Security Cooperation as a Preventive Tool, RAND Corporation (RR-350), 2014

Elvira N. Loredo, John E. Peters, Karlyn D. Stanley, Matthew E. Boyer, William Welser, Thomas S. Szayna, Authorities and Options for Funding USSOCOM Operations, RAND Corporation (RR-360), 2014

Thomas S. Szayna, William Welser, Developing and Assessing Options for the Global SOF Network, RAND Corporation (RR-340), 2013

Eric V. Larson, Derek Eaton, Brian Nichiporuk, Thomas S. Szayna, Assessing Irregular Warfare: A Framework for Intelligence Analysis, RAND Corporation (MG-668), 2009

Thomas S. Szayna, Kevin F. McCarthy, Jerry M. Sollinger, Linda J. Demaine, Jefferson P. Marquis, Brett D. Steele, The Civil-Military Gap in the United States: Does It Exist, Why, and Does It Matter?RAND Corporation (MG-379), 2007

Honors & Awards

  • President's Choice Silver Award, 2013, RAND Corporation
  • President's Choice Gold Award, 2005, RAND Corporation