Dr. Kenneth Katzman is a Senior Fellow at The Soufan Center. His work focuses on geopolitical and regional dynamics in the Middle East—with a focus on Iran—as well as United States strategy. In late 2022, Dr. Katzman retired from his longtime position as a Senior Analyst with the Congressional Research Service (CRS), an arm of the U.S. Congress that provides analysis and advice to members of the U.S. Congress in their legislative and oversight responsibilities. In that post, Dr. Katzman served as a senior Middle East analyst, with special emphasis on Iran, Iran-backed groups operating in the Middle East and South Asia, the Persian Gulf states, Iraq, and Afghanistan. During his more than 30-year tenure at CRS, he provided reports and briefings to Members of Congress and their staffs on U.S. policy on these countries and issues, and provided analysis of related legislative proposals. On about a dozen occasions, he has testified before various Committees and Subcommittees of Congress on his areas of expertise. He also participated in several congressional delegations to the region at the Member and staff level. During 1996 and again during July 2001—March 2002, he was assigned to the majority staff of the House Foreign Affairs Committee to work on Middle East issues, including organizing hearings and helping to draft legislation such as the Iran Sanctions Act (1996).
As a well-known expert on the region, Dr. Katzman has delivered numerous presentations and briefings at conferences and meetings in Washington D.C. as well as throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and South and Central Asia. He has also written numerous articles in various outside publications, including a book entitled The Warriors of Islam: Iran’s Revolutionary Guard (Westview Press, 1993) which was the subject of his Ph.D. dissertation. Since 2017, he has been a contributor to The Soufan Center, including serving as a key drafter of several of the Center’s reports on U.S. policy toward Iran. Dr. Katzman has been quoted frequently on the region and appeared in many regional media, including Al Jazeera, Al Hurra, Al Arabiya, Sharq News, Al Araby, and Al Ghad TV.
In recent years, Dr. Katzman has worked with numerous region-related think tanks and institutions. He has authored scholarly articles for organizations including The Atlantic Council, the Gulf International Forum, the Arab Gulf State Institute of Washington, and the Arab Center D.C. Among his earlier outside publications, during 1998, he wrote expert working papers on the ballistic missile capabilities of Iran and Iraq for the Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States (“Rumsfeld Commission”). In late 1999, and again in 2010, the Atlantic Council published his detailed monographs on U.S. sanctions on Iran.
Dr. Katzman holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from New York University (1991). During May 1985—June 1989, Dr. Katzman was an analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency, where he prepared written reports for U.S. Middle East policymakers on leadership dynamics in Iran, Iraq, and the Persian Gulf states. Two years in the private defense consulting industry followed his tour at the CIA.