Dr James Johnson

Honorary Visiting Fellow

Email: jj210@leicester.ac.uk

Twitter: @James_SJohnson

Website: http://www.jamesjohnsonphd.com

Personal details

  • BA (Bristol)
  • MA (Leeds)
  • PhD (Leicester)

I joined the School as an Honorary Visiting Fellow in July 2017. I am currently a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, Monterey (USA). I recently completed my PhD at Leicester, which applied the ‘Security Dilemma’ theoretical lens to examine Sino-American security relations during the Obama Presidency. My latest projects focus on three interrelated multidisciplinary themes: (1) ‘New’ security challenges posed by emerging technologies - especially artificial intelligence; (2) developing theoretical frameworks to conceptualize shifting great and rising power dynamics in world politics and; (3) US policy responses to rising powers in a multipolar world order. These themes are developed in my book, The US-China Military & Defense Relationship during the Obama Presidency. My latest book project is entitled The AI Revolution & the Future of Warfare: Great Power Competition & Strategic Stability.

Selected Publications


Journal articles

  • ‘Artificial Intelligence in Future Hyper-Warfare: A Perfect Storm of Instability?’ The Washington Quarterly (Spring 2020).
  • ‘Artificial Intelligence: A Threat to Strategic Stability,’ Strategic Studies Quarterly (Spring 2020).
  • ‘AI, Drone Swarming, & Escalation Risks in Future Warfare,’ RUSI Journal (Spring 2020).
  • ‘The AI-Cyber Nexus: Implications for Military Escalation, Deterrence, & Strategic Stability,’ The Journal of Cyber Policy (Chatham House), Vol. 4, Issue 3 (2019): 442-460.
  • ‘The End of Military-Techno Pax Americana? Washington’s Strategic Responses to Chinese AI-enabled military Technology,’ The Pacific Review (Published online, October 2019).
  • ‘Artificial Intelligence & Future Warfare': Implications for International Security,’ Defense & Security Analysis, Vol. 35, Issue 2 (2019): 147-169
  • ‘China’s Vision of the Future Network-Centric Battlefield: Cyber, Space & Electromagnetic Asymmetric Challenges to the U.S.,’ Comparative Strategy, Vol. 37, Issue 5 (2019): 373-390.
  • ‘Chinese Nuclear ‘Warfighting:’ An Emerging Intense U.S.-China Security Dilemma and Threats to Crisis Stability in the Asia Pacific,’ Asian Security, Vol. 15, Issue 3 (2019): 215-232.
  • ‘China’s ‘Guam Express’ and ‘Carrier Killers’: The Anti-Ship Asymmetric Challenge to the U.S. in the Western Pacific, and Security Dilemma Explanations,’ Comparative Strategy, Vol. 36, No. 4 (2017): 319-332.
  • ‘Washington’s Perceptions and Misperceptions of Beijing’s Anti-access Area-denial (A2/AD) ‘Strategy’: Implications for Military Escalation Control and Strategic Stability,’ The Pacific Review, Vol. 20, Issue 3 (2017): 271-288.

Book chapters

  • ‘Emerging Technologies and China’s Challenge to US Innovation Leadership,’ in Reuben Steff, Simone Soare, and Joe Bortun (ed), Emerging Technologies and International Security: Machines, the State and War, Routledge (forthcoming, 2020).
  • ‘The Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Strategic Stability, Escalation, & Nuclear security,’ in Sam Dudin and Chelsey Wiley (ed), The 2019 UK PONI Papers, Royal United Services Institute (December, 2019).
  • ‘The Incumbent Unipole and its Allies: Multipolar Challenges to U.S. Dominance in Artificial Intelligence’, in Benjamin Zala (ed), Interrogating a Multipolar Order: The Use of Multipolar Narratives in National Contexts (Forthcoming, 2020).
  • ‘China’s Nuclear Modernisation: The Evolution of Chinese Nuclear Doctrine, Strategic Ambiguities and Implications for Sino-U.S. Relations’, in M Kouhi-Esfahani (eds), Nuclear politics in Asia (Routledge, 2018) co-authored with Dr. Andrew Futter.

Selected professional publications

  • ‘How Might AI Affect the Cyberspace Threat Environment?’ War on the Rocks, January 2020 - with Eleanor Krabill
  • ‘Is the US losing the artificial intelligence arms race?’ - The Conversation, October 2019.
  • ‘China and the US are Racing to Develop AI Weapons,’ - The Conversation, June 2018.
  • "China’s Evolving Approach to Nuclear War-Fighting” - The Diplomat, November 2017.

Research Interests

  • Nuclear deterrence & strategic stability
  • Sino-US defense relations
  • Emerging technology (especially AI)
  • Cyber-nuclear nexus
  • Chinese nuclear doctrine
  • East Asia security


I am interested in supervising projects in the broad areas of Security & Strategic Studies, Emerging Technology & Future Warfare, U.S.-China Relations, Rising Powers, Nuclear Strategy, Chinese Foreign Policy, and East Asian Security.

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Contact Details

School of Politics and International Relations

University of Leicester
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Leicester, LE1 7RH
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)116 252 2702
Email: HyPIR@le.ac.uk


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