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Personal profile

Research interests

Dr Alex Neads is a Research Associate on the AHRC-funded research project ‘Forever Vigilant? Technology and the Rise of Boundless Warfare’, led by Professor David Galbreath. More information on the project can be found here. The project has resulted in a forthcoming book co-authored with Prof David Galbreath, entitled Technologies at War: Technology, Society and the Changing Face of Warfare, under contract to Lynne Rienner Publishers and expected in Summer 2020.

Alex’s research uses perspectives from strategic studies and military sociology to examine changes in contemporary warfare, with a particular focus on military innovation. He is particularly interested in the linkages between civil-military relations, military change processes and organisational outcomes. His work on security force assistance has been published in the Journal of Strategic Studies.

Prior to joining the University of Bath, Alex was based at the Defence Academy of the UK as a teaching fellow with Cranfield University. He also taught extensively to foreign defence and security establishments, as part of UK Defence Engagement programmes overseas.

Alex read for his PhD in Strategy and Security at the University of Exeter. His doctorate examined the reform of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces by the British-led International Military Advisory and Training Team, and was jointly funded through scholarships from the University of Exeter and Babcock International Ltd. Alex also holds an MPhil in Modern British and European History from the University of Oxford, and a BA in History from Royal Holloway, University of London.

In addition to his research on the ‘Forever Vigilant?’ project, Alex is working on the following draft papers:

'Totemic Technologies and Selective Isomorphism: Principals, Agents, and the Diffusion of Warfare' - examines the extent to which the recipients of security assistance are able to play donors off against each other to bypass conditionality, while still obtaining military aid.

'Promoting the New Model Army: Norm Diffusion and Generational Change during Security Force Assistance' - examines the institutional foundations of civil-military relations through the re-engineering of military career processes.

'Battles for Bridges and Airports: Urban Fighting during Civil Wars in Eastern Europe’ - chapter for an edited volume on urban warfare commissioned by the British Army’s Centre for Historical Analysis and Conflict Research (CHACR).

'Rethinking Societal-Military Relations in Pakistan' - co-authored project with Dr Wali Aslam.

Education/Academic qualification

Strategy and Security, Doctor of Philosophy, University of Exeter


Modern British and European History, Master of Philosophy, University of Oxford


History, Bachelor of Arts, Royal Holloway, University of London


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warfare Social Sciences
Military Social Sciences
civil-military cooperation Social Sciences
military Social Sciences
assistance Social Sciences
military sociology Social Sciences
research project Social Sciences
military aid Social Sciences

Research Output 2017 2017