Commander (ret.) Dr. Patrick Paterson

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Professor of Practice

Pat Paterson is a Professor of Practice at the William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies (WJPC). A 1989 graduate of the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, he retired from in the Navy as a Commander in 2009. His last assignment was as the Political-Military Advisor on the Fourth Fleet staff in Mayport, FL. He completed his PhD in Conflict Resolution at Nova Southeastern University where his research focuses on negotiations with military institutions during post-conflict transitions to democracy. He has a Master’s degree in National Security Studies from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA, a Masters equivalent from the Argentina Naval War College in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and a Master’s degree in Political Science from the American University in Washington, DC. He is the author of four books and numerous defense and security related articles in journals such as The Journal of Military Ethics, Military Review, Armed Forces Journal, Proceedings Magazine, Joint Force Quarterly, Naval History, The Journal of International Affairs, and Security and Defense Studies Review. His latest book, The Blurred Battlefield (JSOU Press, 2021), addresses the need for hybrid doctrines on the use of force for Latin American militaries combating violent crime groups. His principal areas of expertise include civil-military relations, human rights, rule of law, international humanitarian law, and U.S. and Latin American history.


  • Paterson, Patrick. "The Blurred Battlefield: The Perplexing Conflation of Humanitarian and Criminal Law in Contemporary Conflicts" JSOU Report 21-1. Tampa, FL: Joint Special Operations University Press, 2021. PDF icon Download (English)
  • Paterson, Patrick. "Caribbean Sub-Regional HADR Response Efforts in Hurricane Season 2017" Regional Insights. Washington, DC: William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies, 2020. PDF icon Download (English)
  • Paterson, Patrick. "Climate Change is Coming for Annapolis." USNI Proceedings Magazine 145(10/1400). October 2019. Link icon Link
  • Paterson, Patrick. "Measuring Military Professionalism in Partner Nations: Guidance for Security Assistance Officials." Journal of Military Ethics Summer 2019. Link icon Link
  • Paterson, Patrick. "Origins of US Foreign Policy." Occasional Paper. Washington, DC: William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies, 2018. PDF icon Download (English) PDF icon Download (Spanish)
  • Paterson, Patrick. "US Tactical Challenges in Iraq and Afghanistan: Finding the Proper Balance between Force Protection and Collateral Damages." Cuaderno de Difusión: Pensamiento de Estado Mayor 41 (dic 2017): 7-17. PDF icon Download
  • Paterson, Patrick. "Calentamiento Global y Cambio Climático en Sudamérica.” Revista Política y Estrategia 130 (2017): 153-188. PDF icon Download

Updated / Actualizado: September 15, 2021