Aaron Bateman

Headshot of Aaron Bateman

Aaron Bateman

Assistant Professor of History and International Affairs

Full-time Faculty


Email: Aaron Bateman
1957 E St. NW, Office #403G Washington, D.C. 20052

Aaron Bateman is an assistant professor of history and international affairs. He is also a faculty member in the Space Policy Institute within the Elliott School of International Affairs. His research takes place at the nexus of science, technology, and  national security during the Cold War. His work draws from archival collections in the United States, Western Europe, and the former Soviet Union. His first book project places Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative in the context of a more militarized American approach to space that had emerged in the 1970s and shows how divergent views of space militarization influenced U.S. foreign relations through the end of the Cold War. In other projects he examines how satellite technologies shaped both U.S. defense strategy and American-Soviet arms control agreements in the 1970s and 1980s. 

His work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Diplomacy & Statecraft, Intelligence and National Security, the Oxford Handbook of Space Security, the Journal of Strategic Studies, the International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence, Science & Diplomacy, and the Journal of Slavic Military Studies. Since he believes that historians have a unique role to play in informing current policy debates, he also writes about contemporary defense and space topics in policy-focused publications including the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Physics Today, and War on the Rocks.

During his doctoral studies, Aaron held a Guggenheim predoctoral fellowship at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. Prior to graduate school, he served as a U.S. Air Force intelligence officer with assignments at the National Security Agency and the Pentagon. He has also participated in international dialogues aimed at promoting stability in outer space.

  • Cold War
  • Space
  • Military and Intelligence
  • Science and Technology

PhD, Johns Hopkins University

MA, Saint Mary’s University

BA, Saint Joseph’s University

Certificate in Russian Language, Kazan Federal University (Russian Federation)

HIST 2001 Science, Technology, & Espionage

HIST 2001 Spaceflight & The Modern World 

Peer Reviewed
“Keeping the Technological Edge: The Space Arms Race and Anglo-American Relations in the 1980s,” Diplomacy & Statecraft, Vol. 33, No. 2 (2022) 

“Mutually Assured Surveillance at Risk: Anti-Satellite Weapons and Cold War Arms Control,” Journal of Strategic Studies, Vol. 45, No. 1 (2022)

“Intelligence and Alliance Politics: America, Britain, and the Strategic Defense Initiative,” Intelligence and National Security, Vol. 36, No. 7 (2021)

“Technological Wonder and Strategic Vulnerability: Space Reconnaissance and American National Security during the Cold War,” The International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence, Vol. 33, No. 2 (2020)


“One Giant Leap: U.S. Limits on Anti-Satellite Tests Can Strengthen Space Security,” The National Interest, 26 April 2022

“Anti-Satellite Weapons are Creating Space Hazards. Here's a Way to Limit the Damage,” Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, 21 January 2022