Marcus King’s experience comes from academia, research organizations and government service. He is currently John O Rankin Associate Professor, and Director of the Master of Arts in International Affairs Program (MAIA) at George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs. Boasting nearly 300 students enrolled in 17 major fields, MAIA is the largest graduate degree program of its kind. His other academic experience includes an appointment as Associate Research Professor and Director of Research at the Elliott School where he coordinated over $30 million in faculty-sponsored research proposals in collaboration with nine globally-focused and regional research and policy institutes. At Georgetown University, he was a globalization planning fellow and special assistant for international initiatives in the Office of the President with the concurrent rank of adjunct assistant professor.
King teaches courses on environmental and transnational security and the Global Capstone transnational security section. He was instrumental in the establishment of the Global Capstone Program and he taught the pilot course that tested the capstone design. Previously King was an adjunct assistant professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a lecturer in political science at George Washington University. His current research focuses on the connections between environmental degradation, social instability and violence. King’s unique research on the weaponization of water by sub state actors is widely quoted in the academic and policy literature. He was the first scholar to apply this concept to the war in Iraq and Syria.
King is the editor and principal contributor to “Water and Conflict in the Middle East.” Hurst 2020 subsequently Oxford University Press.
Dr. King joined the Elliott School from the research staff of CNA Corporation’s Center for Naval Analyses where he led studies for U.S. government agencies on the topics of energy security and resilience, adaptation and strategic consequences of environmental change. He was project director for the CNA Military Advisory Board (MAB), an elite group of former admirals and generals including former Commandants of the U.S. Marine Corps that launched landmark reports on climate and energy security. Prior to CNA, Dr. King was Research Director of the Sustainable Energy Institute; and Senior Manager for Energy and Security Programs at a private consultancy. Between 1994 and 2001, Dr. King held government appointments in the administration of William Jefferson Clinton. In the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Deputy Under Secretary of Environmental Security), he represented the United States for negotiation of the Kyoto Protocol on climate change and other environmental agreements and was awarded the Secretary of Defense Medal for Outstanding Public Service. Dr. King began his career in the Office of the Secretary of Energy where he provided direct research and analytical support to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary and participated in negotiations on the peaceful uses of nuclear energy with the Russian Federation.
Dr. King has delivered invited lectures to many government and international organizations. He has been cited by The New York Times, Newsweek, Slate, USA Today and Vice Magazine among others, appeared on NBC, CCTV and Al Jazeera and is featured in two documentary films and the television program Bill Nye Saves the World.