First released in 2011, the Costs of War report has been compiled and updated by more than 30 economists, anthropologists, lawyers, humanitarian personnel, and political scientists as the first comprehensive analysis of over a decade of wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan. The Costs of War Project analyzes the implications of these wars in terms of human casualties, economic costs, and civil liberties.
The Costs of War project is a nonpartisan, nonprofit, scholarly initiative based at Brown University's Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. All of the research groups’ papers to date are posted on this site, with further research findings to be posted in the coming months.
Neta C. Crawford is Professor of Political Science at Boston University. She is the author of more than two dozen peer reviewed articles on issues of war and peace and the author of two books, Soviet Military Aircraft (1987) and Argument and Change in World Politics (2002), named Best Book in International History and Politics by the American Political Science Association. Crawford has served on the governing Board of the Academic Council of the United Nations System, and on the Governing Council of the American Political Science Association.
Catherine Lutz is the Thomas J. Watson, Jr. Family Professor of Anthropology and International Studies at the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. She is the author of numerous books on the US military and its bases and personnel, including Breaking Ranks (with M. Gutmann, 2010), The Bases of Empire (ed., 2009); Homefront: A Military City and the American 20th Century (2001), and a co-founder of the Network of Concerned Anthropologists. She has also conducted research on UN peacekeeping in Haiti and Lebanon. Lutz is past president of the American Ethnological Society, the largest organization of cultural anthropologists in the US.
Communications Director, Watson Institute for International Studies, Brown University
Karen Lynch was communications director at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies from 2006 to 2012, during which time she worked on projects including the Costs of War. Prior to joining Brown, she was communications and content director at the Development Gateway Foundation, a World Bank initiative using the web to share information and practical solutions for alleviating poverty. She is also past director of the Markle Foundation’s Global Digital Opportunity Program, which advanced the use of information and communication technologies for development. Karen is currently a freelance writer and communications consultant.
Nadje Al-Ali is Professor of Gender Studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. Her publications include We Are Iraqis: Aesthetics and Politics in a Time of War (2013, edited with Deborah Al-Najjar), What kind of Liberation? Women and the Occupation of Iraq (co-authored with Nicola Pratt, 2009); Iraqi Women: Untold Stories from 1948 to the Present (2007), amongst many other publications about women and gender in the Middle East. She is also a founding member of Act Together: Women's Action for Iraq. With the support of UN Women and Open Society Foundations, Nadje is currently helping to coordinate the first ever Iraqi shadow report of the UN Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), in addition to various capacity building projects of Iraqi academics and women’s rights activists.
Andrew J. Bacevich is Professor of History and International Relations at Boston University. A graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, he received his Ph.D. in American diplomatic history from Princeton. He is the author of Washington Rules: America’s Path to Permanent War (2010), The Limits of Power: The End of American Exceptionalism (2008), and The New American Militarism: How Americans Are Seduced by War (2005), among other books.
Chantal Berman recently received her B.A. from Brown University with degrees in International Relations and Middle East Studies. She has conducted research on Iraqi refugee policies in Syria and Lebanon. Berman works as an Assistant Producer at Radio Open Source with Christopher Lydon. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Politics at Princeton University.
Linda J. Bilmes, Daniel Patrick Moynihan Senior Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, is a leading expert on U.S. budgeting and public finance. Bilmes was Assistant Secretary and Chief Financial Officer of the U.S. Department of Commerce during the Clinton administration. She is co-author (with Joseph Stiglitz) of the New York Times bestseller The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict (2008). She has written extensively on the cost of war and veterans’ issues, including "Soldiers Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan: The Long-term Costs of Providing Veterans Medical Care and Disability Benefits” (2007). Bilmes is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Melani Cammett is Associate Professor of Political Science and the Dupee Faculty Fellow at the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. Cammett's new book, Compassionate Communalism: Welfare and Sectarianism in Lebanon (Cornell University Press, forthcoming), explores how politics shape the distribution of welfare goods by ethnic and sectarian organizations. An article published in 2012 in the Journal of Conflict Resolution examines the impact of institutional design on post-war governance and peace-building. Cammett has also published scholarly articles in World Politics, Studies in Comparative International Development, Comparative Politics, and World Development. Cammett’s current research explores governance and the politics of social service provision by Islamists and other public and private actors in the Middle East.
Anita Dancs is Assistant Professor of Economics at Western New England University. She writes on the military and the U.S. economy, and the economics of war. She has been interviewed extensively by national media including appearances on CNN, CNBC, and Marketplace, and her research has been covered by the Washington Post, New York Times, and Associated Press amongst others. She was research director of the National Priorities Project, and has been a staff economist with the Center for Popular Economics for more than 15 years, making economics more accessible to the general population.
Omar Dewachi is a physician from Iraq and a medical anthropologist, currently an Assistant Professor of Public Health at the American University of Beirut. In 2008, he graduated from Harvard University with a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology. Dewachi has worked on Iraqi medical doctors, their role in the formation of the Iraqi state, migration to the UK and integration in the British National Health Service (NHS). Dewachi’s current research is on war injuries and patients seeking health care outside Iraq.
Ryan D. Edwards is Assistant Professor of Economics at Queens College, a member of the doctoral faculty at the City University of New York, and a faculty research fellow with the National Bureau of Economic Research. His studies focus on the interrelated causes and consequences of health, mortality, and economic well-being.
Cynthia Enloe is Research Professor at Clark University (Massachusetts) in the Program of Women's and Gender Studies and the Department of International Development, Community and the Environment (IDCE). She received her Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley. Among Enloe’s books are Bananas, Beaches and Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Politics (2000); The Curious Feminist(2004); and Globalization and Militarism: Feminists Make the Link (2007), Nimo's War, Emma's War: Making Feminist Sense of the Iraq War (2010). Enloe’s latest book (coauthored with Joni Seager) is The Real State of America: Mapping the Myths and Truths of the United States (2011).
Matthew Evangelista is President White Professor of History and Political Science and former chair of the Department of Government at Cornell University, where he teaches courses in international and comparative politics. He is the author of five books: Innovation and the Arms Race(1988); Unarmed Forces: The Transnational Movement to End the Cold War (1999); The Chechen Wars (2002); Law, Ethics, and the War on Terror(2008); and Gender, Nationalism, and War (2011). He is the editor of Peace Studies, 4 vols. (2005), and co-editor of Partners or Rivals? European-American Relations after Iraq (2005); New Wars, New Laws? Applying the Laws of War in 21st Century Conflicts (2005); and Democracy and Security(2008).
Brendan M. Fischer is Staff Counsel with the Center for Media and Democracy. He graduated from Wisconsin Law School in 2011. Prior to law school, he worked for a music publicist and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in a rural community in El Salvador.
Phillip Gara is a filmmaker with the Global Media Project at the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. He was an associate producer on the documentary Human Terrain, directed shorts including Virtuous War, Disastrous Horizons, The Military Industrial Complex...50 Years Later, and is currently directing a feature documentary, Project Z.
Heidi Garrett-Peltier holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She currently works as a Research Fellow at the Political Economy Research Institute at UMass. Heidi has written and contributed to a number of reports on the clean energy economy, including Green Prosperity: How Clean-Energy Policies Can Fight Poverty and Raise Living Standards in the United States and The Economic Benefits of Investing in Clean Energy. She has also written about the employment effects of defense spending with co-author Robert Pollin in publications such as Benefits of a Slimmer Pentagon (The Nation, May 2012) and The U.S. Employment Effects of Military and Domestic Spending Priorities (Institute for Policy Studies, 2007). Additionally, Heidi has consulted with the U.S. Department of Energy on federal energy programs and she is an active member of the Center for Popular Economics.
Lisa Graves is the Executive Director of the Center for Media and Democracy. She has testified as an expert witness before the U.S. Senate and House on national security issues. Graves’ former leadership posts include serving as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Policy/Policy Development at the U.S. Department of Justice; Deputy Chief of the Article III Judges Division of the U.S. Courts; Chief Counsel for Nominations for the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee; Senior Legislative Strategist for the ACLU; and Deputy Director of the Center for National Security Studies. She has also appeared as an expert on CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, National Public Radio, Air America, Pacifica Radio, and in the major US dailies.
Hugh Gusterson is Professor of Cultural Studies and Anthropology at George Mason University, where he teaches and conducts research on militarism, public anthropology, the politics and culture of nuclear weapons, and ethics. He has done fieldwork in the United States and Russia, where he has studied the culture of nuclear weapons scientists and antinuclear activists. He is the author of People of the Bomb (Minnesota, 2004), and Nuclear Rites (UC Press, 1996), and co-editor of The Insecure American: How We Got Here and What We Should Do About It (University of California Press, 2009), Why America's Top Pundits Are Wrong (UC Press, 2005), and Cultures of Insecurity (Minnesota, 1999). As well as writing for scholarly journals, Hugh has a regular online column for the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists and has published in numerous newspapers and magazines. Hugh is currently working on a book entitled Weaponizing Culture.
William D. Hartung is director of the Arms and Security Project at the Center for International Policy. He is an internationally recognized expert on the arms trade, nuclear policy, and military spending. Hartung is the author of Prophets of War: Lockheed Martin and the Making of the Military Industrial Complex (2011), the co-editor of Lessons from Iraq: Avoiding the Next War (2008), and And Weapons for All (1995). Hartung’s articles on security issues have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, The Nation, and the World Policy Journal. He has been a featured expert on national security issues on CBS 60 Minutes, NBC Nightly News, the Lehrer Newshour, CNN, Fox News, and scores of local, regional, and international radio outlets.
Jennifer Heath is an independent scholar, curator, award-winning activist and cultural journalist, author/editor of nine books, including Children of Afghanistan: The Path to Peace (co—edited with Ashraf Zahedi, forthcoming, 2014, University of Texas Press), Land of the Unconquerable: The Lives of Contemporary Afghan Women (co-edited with Ashraf Zahedi, UC Press, 2011), The Veil: Women Writers on Its History, Lore, and Politics (editor, UC Press, 2008), and A House White With Sorrow: A Ballad for Afghanistan (1996). She is the founder of Seeds for Afghanistan and the Afghanistan Relief Organization Midwife Training and Infant Care Program. With colleagues in Afghanistan, Jennifer is creating Tents for Peace, a storytelling project of the Afghans4Tomorrow Institute of Oral Traditions.
James Heintz is Associate Research Professor and Associate Director at the Political Economy Research Institute of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. He has published widely on employment, economic policy, labor standards, international trade, clean energy, and human rights. He has worked with the International Labor Organization, the United Nations Development Program, the UN Research Institute for Social Development, and the Economic Commission for Africa. Part of his work has involved examining the relationships between economic policy and social and economic rights in conjunction with various human rights organizations.
Alison Howell is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University . Her research explores the politics of medicine in global affairs, with a specific focus on mental health, security, and global governance. She is the author of Madness in International Relations: Psychology, Security and the Global Governance of Mental Health (Routledge, 2011). She has also published in the areas of gender and foreign policy, the politics of detention, the place of suicide in global affairs, and on mental health reform in Iraq. Among Alison’s latest publications are “Afghanistan’s Price” (Literary Review of Canada, 2012) and “The Demise of PTSD: From Governing Trauma to Governing through Resilience” (Alternatives).
Dahr Jamail is an award-winning author and a journalist with Al-Jazeera English. He spent nine months in Iraq between 2003 and 2009 as one of the few unembedded, independent US journalists in the country reporting on the Iraq war and its human costs. In early 2012, Jamail reported for Al-Jazeera television from Baghdad and Fallujah and wrote feature stories for Al-Jazeera’s website. He has also reported from Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan, following Iraqi refugees as well as other conflicts in the region. Jamail’s stories have additionally appeared via Inter Press Service, Le Monde Diplomatique, The Guardian, The Independent, and The Nation, among others. He has appeared on the BBC, NPR, and Russia Today. He has received the 2008 Martha Gellhorn Award for Journalism, the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, the Joe A. Callaway Award for Civic Courage, and four Project Censored awards.
Ken MacLeish is Assistant Professor at the Center for Medicine, Health and Society and the Department of Anthropology at Vanderbilt University. He is the author of Making War at Fort Hood: Life and Uncertainty in a Military Community (Princeton University Press, 2013), an ethnography exploring the everyday experience of war for soldiers, military families, and other military community members. His current research examines how politics and morality shape ideas about soldier suicide and military behavioral health.
Megan K. McBride is currently working on her Ph.D. in Religious Studies, focusing on religious violence and terrorism, at Brown University. She has an M.A. in Liberal Arts from the Great Books program at St. John's College, and an M.A. in Government from John Hopkins University where her thesis led to an article on the psychology of terrorism ("The Logic of Terrorism: Existential Anxiety, the Search for Meaning, and Terrorist Ideologies", Terrorism and Political Violence, 2011).
Robert Miller is an Associate Professor of Pulmonary Medicine at Vanderbilt University. He was the principal investigator in a project evaluating service members with exercise limitation following service in Iraq and Afghanistan (“Constrictive Bronchiolitis in Soldiers Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan,” New England Journal of Medicine, 2011). He is now collaborating with other institutions and governmental agencies to further characterize the disorder and define appropriate compensation for those affected.
Norah Niland has spent much of her professional life with the United Nations, both in the field (including assignments in Sri Lanka, Thailand, Cambodia, Liberia and Afghanistan), and in New York on humanitarian, human rights, and development issues. Niland recently completed an assignment in 2010 in Afghanistan as Director of Human Rights in UNAMA. Before this, she was in charge of policy development with the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Geneva.
Nicola Pratt is Associate Professor of International Politics of the Middle East at the University of Warwick, UK. She is co-author of What Kind of Liberation? Women and the Occupation of Iraq (2009) and co-editor of Women and War in the Middle East (2009), both with Nadje Al-Ali. Her current research is on gendering the politics of insecurity in the Middle East.
Mac Skelton is Senior Fellow at the Business Council for International Understanding. He has conducted research on cancer and the breakdown of oncology in Iraq. As a graduate student in Anthropology at the American University of Beirut, he conducted fieldwork at a Beirut hotel where hundreds of Iraqi cancer patients have lodged over the past few years due to the war-related deterioration of medical care in Iraq. The project was part of a broader effort led by Omar Al-Dewachi examining healthcare outsourcing in the wake of the Iraq War.
Jessica Stern is a Fellow at the Hoover Institution and at the FXB Center for Human Rights at Harvard University. She is the author of several books and numerous articles on terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. She served on President Clinton’s National Security Council Staff, and as an analyst at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. She is a member of the Trilateral Commission and of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Winslow T. Wheeler is Director of the Straus Military Reform Project of the Center for Defense Information, based at the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) in Washington, DC. He is the author of The Wastrels of Defense (2004) and Military Reform (2007), and the editor of the anthology The Pentagon Labyrinth: 10 Short Essays to Help You through It (2011) and the 2008 anthology, America’s Defense Meltdown: Pentagon Reform for President Obama and the New Congress (2009). From 1971 to 2002, Wheeler worked on national security issues for members of the U.S. Senate and for the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). In the Senate, Wheeler advised Jacob K. Javits (R-NY), Nancy L. Kassebaum (R-KS), David Pryor (D-AR), and Pete V. Domenici (R-NM). He was the first and last Senate staffer to work simultaneously on the staffs of a Republican and a Democrat.
Zoë H. Wool received her Ph.D. from the University of Toronto and is currently an NIMH Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research at Rutgers University. She has conducted ethnographic fieldwork with injured U.S. soldiers and their families rehabilitating at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Her work on this and other issues related to the U.S. military since 9/11 includes “Labors of Love: The Transformation of Care in the Non-Medical Attendant Program at Walter Reed Army Medical Center” (co-authored with Seth Messinger, Medical Anthropology Quarterly, 2012) and “On Movement: The Matter of U.S. Soldiers’ Being After Combat” (In press, Ethnos), among other publications.
Bassam Yousif is Associate Professor of economics at Indiana State University. He has written extensively on the economic development and political economy of Iraq, including his article, “The Political Economy of Sectarianism in Iraq” (International Journal of Contemporary Iraqi Studies,2011). His work has led to policy consulting. Bassam’s book, The Human Development of Iraq, has recently been published by Routledge (2012).
We would also like to thank Joseph Grady at Cultural Logic for his consultations on this website. Research assistance on the project was also provided by Dr. Kathleen Millar, and Brown University students Sujaya Desai, Sofia Quesada, Hannah Winkler, and David Granberg. Thanks also to Christina Rowley for her assistance in helping establish the Eisenhower Research Project. Deborah Healey provided expert administrative assistance. Additionally, we would like to thank our Web Design Assistant, Maxime Long, for his hard work maintaining and developing the site.
Board Members, Eisenhower Research Project
Christian Appy, University of Massachusetts
William Astore, Pennsylvania College of Technology, USAF (Ret.)
Andrew Bacevich, Boston University, USA (Ret.)
Aaron Belkin, University of California, Los Angeles
Peter Burgess, Peace Research Institute, Oslo
Carol Cohn, Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights
Deborah Cowen, University of Toronto
Neta Crawford, Boston University
Anita Dancs, Western New England College
Tom Engelhardt, The Nation Institute
Cynthia Enloe, Clark University
Sabine Fruhstuck, University of California, Santa Barbara
Henry Giroux, Pennsylvania State University
William Hartung, New America Foundation
Elizabeth Hillman, University of California, Hastings College of the Law
Michael Klare, Hampshire College
Michael Sherry, Northwestern University
J. Ann Tickner, University of Southern California, Los Angeles
David Vine, American University
Rachel Woodward, University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire
Marilyn Young, New York University