Reflections on Net Assessment

October 4, 2022

The Andrew W. Marshall Foundation & Institute for Defense Analyses

Andrew W. Marshall, Edited by Jeffrey S. McKitrick and Robert G. Angevine

Watch the Launch Event

Published by the Andrew W. Marshall Foundation (AWMF) and the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA), Reflections on Net Assessment features newly released interviews with Andy Marshall, one of the longest-serving defense intellectuals in the United States, including 25 years at the RAND Corporation and more than 40 years as the founding director of Net Assessment in the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

Backed by their decades of experience working inside or supporting the Office of Net Assessment at the U.S. Department of Defense, editors Jeffrey S. McKitrick and Robert G. Angevine have woven together a description of Marshall’s place in the rapidly changing 20th century with interviews that defense analyst Kurt Guthe conducted with Marshall between 1993 and 1999. In these interviews, Marshall reflects on the themes that defined his career. He recounts his experience as an analyst among exceptional thinkers at the flourishing RAND Corporation during the Cold War and his work in national security and defense under six U.S. presidents. Readers gain insight into his basic beliefs about human endeavors, his view on the nature of competition between nations, and his strategy for exerting influence in the U.S. government.

Reflections on Net Assessment is an opportunity to learn about the intellectual history of net assessment in Andy Marshall’s own words. It is a unique primary source for students, experts, and anyone interested in national security and strategy.

The original interviews with Andrew Marshall upon which this book is based were funded by the Smith Richardson Foundation.

The New Makers of Modern Strategy: From the Ancient World to the Digital Age

May 2, 2023

Princeton University Press

Contributions by John Bew, Lawrence Freedman, Walter Russell Mead, Toshi Yoshihara, Matthew Kroenig, Hew Strachan, Antulio Echevarria, John H. Maurer, Michael Cotey Morgan, James Lacey, Eric Helleiner, Jonathan Kirshner, Iskander Rehman, Matt J. Schumann, Michael V. Leggiere, Charles Edel, Francis J. Gavin, Wayne Wei-Siang Hsieh, Sarah C. M. Paine, Priya Satia, Margaret MacMillan, Williamson Murray, Robert Kagan, Tami Biddle, Brendan Simms, Daniel Marston, Guy Laron, Tanvi Madan, Sergey Radchenko, Thomas G. Mahnken, Christopher J. Griffin, Dmitry Adamsky, Carter Malkasian, Ahmed S. Hashim, Elizabeth Economy, Seth G. Jones, Sue Mi Terry, Jason K. Stearns, Joshua Rovner, Thomas Rid, John Lewis Gaddis, Eric Edelman, Andrew Ehrhardt, Mark Moyar

The New Makers of Modern Strategy is the next generation of the definitive work on strategy and the key figures who have shaped the theory and practice of war and statecraft throughout the centuries. Featuring entirely new entries by a who’s who of world-class scholars, this new edition provides global, comparative perspectives on strategic thought from antiquity to today, surveying both classical and current themes of strategy while devoting greater attention to the Cold War and post-9/11 eras. The contributors evaluate the timeless requirements of effective strategy while tracing the revolutionary changes that challenge the makers of strategy in the contemporary world. Amid intensifying global disorder, the study of strategy and its history has never been more relevant. The New Makers of Modern Strategy draws vital lessons from history’s most influential strategists, from Thucydides and Sun Zi to Clausewitz, Napoleon, Churchill, Mao, Ben-Gurion, Andrew Marshall, Xi Jinping, and Qassem Soleimani.”

Net Assessment and Military Strategy

March 2020

Cambria Press

In Thomas G. Mahnken’s Net Assessment and Military Strategy, former members of Marshall’s staff and those who benefited from his mentorship present essays on the history, tenets, applications, and influence of net assessment and Marshall’s work. Featuring an introduction by Andrew Marshall, this volume is essential reading that traces net assessment’s impact on U.S. national security and defense strategy from the Cold War to today.

The Last Warrior: Andrew Marshall and the Shaping of Modern American Defense Strategy

January 6, 2015

Basic Books

In The Last Warrior, Andrew Krepinevich and Barry Watts—both former members of Marshall’s staff—trace Marshall’s intellectual development from his upbringing in Detroit during the Great Depression to his decades in Washington as an influential behind-the-scenes advisor on American defense strategy. The result is a unique insider’s perspective on the changes in U.S. strategy from the dawn of the Cold War to the present day.

American Defense Reform: Lessons from Failure and Success in Navy History

December 1, 2022

Georgetown University Press

Featuring a discussion on Andy Marshall, American Defense Reform is “a roadmap for U.S. military innovation based on the Navy’s history of success through civilian-military collaborations.”

“The U.S. military must continually adapt to evolving technologies, shifting adversaries, and a changing social environment for its personnel. In American Defense Reform, Dave Oliver and Anand Toprani use U.S. naval history as a guide for leading successful change in the Pentagon.

American Defense Reform provides a historical analysis of the Navy during four key periods of disruptive transformation: the 1940s Revolt of the Admirals, the McNamara Revolution in systems analysis, the fallout from the Vietnam War, and the end of the Cold War. The authors draw insights from historical documents, previously unpublished interviews from four-star admirals, and Oliver’s own experiences as a senior naval officer and defense industry executive. They show that Congress alone cannot effectively create change and reveal barriers to applying the experience of the private sector to the public sector.”

Remembering Andy Marshall

May 2020

The Andrew W. Marshall Foundation

This publication features reflections, remarks, and essays by:

Graham Allison

Mie Augier

Jesse Ausubel

Gordon Barrass

Rebecca Bash

Keith Bickel

Jacqueline Deal

Nicholas Eberstadt

David Epstein

David Fahrenkrug

Aaron Friedberg

Melissa Hathaway

Andrew Krepinevich

Scooter Libby

Andrew May

Jeffrey S. McKitrick

John Milam

Chip Pickett

Dmitry Ponomareff

Jim Powell

James Roche

Stephen P. Rosen

Paul Selva

Abram Shulsky

Anna Simons

Lionel Tiger

Barry Watts

The Diffusion of Military Technology and Ideas


Stanford University Press

Read the Foreword by Andrew W. Marshall

About the Book

“As military forces across the globe adopt new technologies, doctrines, and organizational forms suited to warfare in the information age, defense practitioners and academic specialists are debating the potential consequences of the “revolution in military affairs.” The central question of this book is how such revolutions spread, to whom, how quickly, and with what consequences for the global balance of military power. The contributors to this volume—who include historians, political scientists, policy analysts, and sociologists—examine the diffusion of weapons technology, know-how, and methods of conducting military operations over the past two hundred years. The approach reflects the recent reawakening of interest in the relationship between culture and security.

The transition from the industrial age to the information age has impacted warfare much as it has other social institutions. Advances in precision weapons, surveillance satellites, robotics, and computer-based information processing, together with organizational changes that network military units, promise to create fundamentally new ways of war; the final outcome of the current revolution is unpredictable—as the North Korean missile program shows—but its global impact will hinge on how the revolution diffuses.”

The Next 200 Years: A Scenario for America and the World

January 1, 1976


“This optimistic report on the future of the U.S. and its techno-economic leadership to world prosperity was timed to coincide with the American bicentennial. The report uses statistical studies and logic to argue that intensive development of technology in a post-industrial format and rational planning rather than reduced rates of economic growth and consumption are the best ways to support a growing world population.”