Dr. William Godnick

Professor of Practice

Dr. William ‘Bill’ Godnick joined the Perry Center as Professor of Practice in September 2016 after serving nearly a decade as Public Security Program Coordinator for the United Nations Regional Centre for Peace, Disarmament and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean leading technical assistance programs on conventional arms control, nonproliferation, forensic ballistics, private security regulation and armed violence reduction strategies. Prior to that, Dr. Godnick worked as a Senior Policy Advisor for Latin America with the British organization International Alert. During that time, his efforts focused on supporting the Office of the Vice President of Colombia in building a coalition of government agencies, multinational and state-owned extractive industry and civil society for the implementation of the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, a multi-stakeholder code of conduct guiding company and security forces operations in conflict zones. He began his career as a Peace Corps Volunteer working on small business development in Honduras in the early 1990s.

Bill holds a BS in International Business from San Francisco State University (1992) and an MA in International Policy Studies from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (1997). In 2010, he completed his PhD from the Department of Peace Studies at the University of Bradford in the United Kingdom. His doctoral dissertation was titled "An examination of the impact of voluntary weapons collection programs on citizen security in Latin America." Dr. Godnick frequently has taught graduate and undergraduate students at American University, Barry University, the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey and California State University Monterey Bay.

Dr. Godnick currently leads the Perry Center's academic offerings in Human Rights and the Rule of Law and Caribbean Defense and Security and provides support to the Strategy and Defense Policy and the Countering Transnational Threat Networks courses. He has lived in the Bahamas, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Peru and worked in more than 20 countries in the Western Hemisphere. His research interests are varied in the fields of national security, defense, governance, transnational threats and human rights, but most of his research is comparative in nature focusing on the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean.


  • Godnick, William. "Vaccination Against COVID-19 Among the Armed Forces of the Western Hemisphere." Occasional Paper. William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies. June 2022. PDF icon Download (English)
  • Godnick, William. "Armed Forces and Human Rights: Other Situations of Violence and Additional Consideration." in International Humanitarian Law 2021, ed. Philip Kaplan et al., 97-110. Washington, DC: Inter-American Defense College. 2021. Link icon Link
  • Godnick, William. Review of "Understanding Mexico’s Security Conundrum" by Agustin Maciel-Padilla. Americas Quarterly, 25 May 2021. Link icon Link
  • Godnick, William and David Guenni. "Social Media Use in the Venezuelan Defense and Security Sectors: Testing and Refining a Conceptual Framework." Occasional Paper. Washington, DC: William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies, 2020. PDF icon Download (English) PDF icon Download (Spanish)
  • Godnick, William. Review of China's Strategic Partnerships in Latin America: Case Studies of China's Oil Diplomacy in Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and Venezuela 1991 - 2015 by Yanran Xu. PRISM 8, no. 1 (March 2019): pp. 143-145. PDF icon Download
  • Godnick, William, ed., Strategic Vision Initiative: Visualizing Security and Defense in the Western Hemisphere to 2030. Washington, DC: William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies, 2018. PDF icon Download
  • Godnick, William. Review of Los Zetas Inc: Criminal Corporations, Energy, and Civil War in Mexico by Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera. Stability: International Journal of Security and Development 7, no. 1 (February 2018): p. 2 Link icon Link

Updated / Actualizado: September 22, 2022