New fellows will contribute to the Atlantic Council’s leading work on transatlantic relations, the China challenge, and security in Europe and the Indo-Pacific.

Washington, DC—April 12, 2021—Today, the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security announced the addition of two nonresident senior fellows: 

  • Dr. Sarah Kirchberger, a Sinologist with expertise in maritime security in the Indo-Pacific region, emerging technologies in the maritime and space spheres, and Russian-Chinese military-industrial relations. Kirchberger will lend her knowledge across the entire Scowcroft Center and inform thought leadership on transatlantic security, the China challenge, and the future of warfare. Kirchberger also serves as head of Asia-Pacific Strategy and Security at the Institute for Security Policy at Kiel University (ISPK) and vice president of the German Maritime Institute (DMI).
  • Dr. John R. Deni, an expert in US foreign and defense policy, the security relationship between the United States and Europe, and alliance theory and practice. Deni is also a research professor of Joint, Interagency, Intergovernmental, and Multinational (JIIM) Security Studies at the Strategic Studies Institute, the research arm of the US Army War College, and an adjunct professorial lecturer at the American University’s School of International Service.

Each expert will make critically important contributions to the Scowcroft Center’s convening power, in-depth research, and timely commentary and analysis to foster a more competitive and resilient transatlantic community. Both Kirchberger and Deni are well-placed to apply their experience and insights into the Scowcroft Center’s main priorities for 2021: great power competition (particularly with China), revitalizing the rules-based system, advancing emerging defense technologies, and honoring General Scowcroft’s legacy of service, non-partisan strategies, and mentorship of the next generation of leaders.

“Both fellows lend cutting-edge expertise on the latest challenges facing the transatlantic community, as well as the practical knowledge of how to uniquely tailor strategies to attain sustainable security,” said Barry Pavel, Senior Vice President and Director of the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. “As security threats become increasingly interconnected and complex, we will rely upon their unique thought leadership to devise strategies for transatlantic cooperation across a host of issues.”

“Sarah Kirchberger’s expertise will inform our groundbreaking work on the convergences and divergences of how to address the rise of China with our European allies. Her European perspective lends insight into how we can better bridge the gap in approaches across the transatlantic community,” said Christopher Skaluba, Director of the Scowcroft Center’s Transatlantic Security Initiative. “John Deni’s creative, outside the box thinking and wealth of scholarship encourages us to be bold and provocative in finding innovative solutions to the persistent challenges facing the NATO Alliance.”

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The Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security works to develop sustainable, nonpartisan strategies to address the most important security challenges facing the United States and the world. The Center honors General Brent Scowcroft’s legacy of service and embodies his ethos of nonpartisan commitment to the cause of security, support for US leadership in cooperation with allies and partners, and dedication to the mentorship of the next generation of leaders. For more information, please visit and follow us on Twitter @AtlanticCouncil.

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