Erica Borghard

Associate Research Scholar, Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies; International Affairs Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations


​Erica D. Borghard is an International Affairs Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, where she will be exploring escalation dynamics in cyberspace. For the past three years, she has served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Social Sciences and Executive Director of the Grand Strategy Program at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Dr. Borghard received her Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University. Her dissertation, “Friends with Benefits? Power and Influence in Proxy Warfare,” explores the dynamics of proxy alliances and proxy warfare, focusing on the politics of plausible deniability and implications for how states control and influence the behavior of their proxies. Erica’s current research agenda focuses on cyber warfare, in particular, cyber proxies, coercion and deterrence in cyberspace, and escalation dynamics in cyberspace. Erica’s research has appeared in a variety of academic and policy journals, including American Political Science Review, Security Studies, Survival: Global Politics and Strategy, Parameters, and Orbis. She has also published pieces for The Cato Institute, The National Interest,, and The Washington Post. Erica is a Term Member at the Council on Foreign Relations.


Book Chapters

Erica Borghard and James Mulvenon, “Strategic Implications of Cyber Conflict,” in Cyber Conflict: The State of the Field, eds. Jason Healey and Karl Grindal (Vienna, VA: Cyber Conflict Studies Association, 2018).

Journal Articles

Shawn W. Lonergan and Erica Borghard, “The Logic of Coercion in Cyberspace,” Security Studies 26, no. 3 (2017): 452-481.

Shawn W. Lonergan and Erica Borghard, “Can Status Calculate the Risks of Using Cyber Proxies?” Orbis 60, no. 3 (2016): 395-416.

Mira Rapp-Hooper and Erica Borghard, “Hizbullah and the Iranian Nuclear Programme,” Survival: Global Politics and Strategy 55, no. 4 (2013): 85-106.

Costantino Pischedda and Erica Borghard, “Allies and Airpower in Libya,” Parameters 64 (2012): 63-74.

Jack Snyder and Erica Borghard, “The Cost of Empty Threats: A Penny, Not a Pound,” American Political Science Review 105, no. 3 (2011).

Jack Snyder and Erica Borghard, “The Cost of Empty Threats: A Penny, Not a Pound,” The American Political Science Review 105, no. 3  (2011).