The Chicago Project on Security and Threats (CPOST) is a non-partisan research center at the University of Chicago dedicated to advancing scholarship on international politics, security, and trade that advances peace and prosperity. CPOST brings together leading scholars at the University of Chicago conducting rigorous, data-driven research on issues of national and international importance to provide critical knowledge to policymakers, scholars, and the public. CPOST's research lab model supports faculty research with dedicated teams of graduate and undergraduate research assistants, strengthening world-class education for future professionals.

CPOST Areas of Expertise

CPOST-affiliated faculty research brings critical expertise on a wide range of topics of pressing national and international security challenges.

Albert Pick Hall for International Studies

Terrorism, Insurgency, and Violence by Non-State Actors

From terrorists to insurgents to criminal gangs, modern militant networks are growing in scale, complexity in relating to state and non-state actors, and their use of social media, suicide terrorism and other technology. CPOST studies these actors’ behavior, detecting patterns that can provide early warning and identify peaceful solutions.

Statecraft, Secrecy, and Covert Interventions

From cyberattacks to election meddling, modern technology enables governments and non-state actors to conceal invasive efforts to advance their own interests. CPOST’s research sheds light on how to protect national security through politically smart intelligence.

Politics of Alliances and International Institutions

History has shown that subtle provocations can spark all-out war. CPOST helps national security leaders understand complex sources of nonmilitary tension, so they have a better chance of resolving disagreements before they turn violent, and understand the effects of economic sanctions and humanitarian intervention.

Coercion, Compliance, and Transnational Norms

Rhetoric and relationships can have a significant impact on national security, but not always the impact one might intend. CPOST puts conventional wisdom to the test, measuring the concrete effects of US diplomacy and international efforts to spread liberal norms and governance.