Peter Rough
Europe, Germany, Trans-Atlantic Affairs

Share Profile

Peter Rough is a senior fellow and director of the Center on Europe and Eurasia at Hudson Institute. In that capacity, he writes and comments on US foreign policy and regularly briefs official delegations, news media, public intellectuals, academics, and business leaders from around the world. Mr. Rough also convenes several track 1.5 dialogues.

Mr. Rough is a regular commentator on major radio and television and speaker in public forums. While at the institute, he has been named a next generation leader at the Munich Security Conference, Atlantik-Brücke, the Center for New American Security, and the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies. He has also helped edit Hudson’s journal, Current Trends in Islamist Ideology.

Mr. Rough is also principal and founder of Hilltop Solutions, a limited liability company that performs writing and research services for academics, executives, and political professionals. Previously, as director of research in the Office of George W. Bush, Mr. Rough assisted the former president with his memoir, Decision Points. In 2014, his highly acclaimed collaboration with Leila Fawaz on a social history of World War I in the Middle East, A Land of Aching Hearts, was published by Harvard University Press.

From 2007 to 2009, Mr. Rough served as associate director in the White House Office of Strategic Initiatives, where he helped coordinate political strategy and outreach to key stakeholders. He has also completed stints as a policy analyst at the US Agency for International Development, where he was staff briefer to Administrator Henrietta Fore, and as an advisor to US Army Special Operations Command, where he analyzed unconventional warfare doctrine for the commanding general’s Strategic Initiatives Group. In 2012, he was responsible for US-Russia bilateral relations as a member of the Romney for President Russia Working Group. In 2016, he served as a member of the Rubio for President Middle East Working Group.

Mr. Rough began his career at the Republican National Committee specializing in political research. A proud native of Des Moines, Iowa, he holds his BA, summa cum laude, from the George Washington University and MA in law and diplomacy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, where he was a Cabot corporation scholar.

He is a member of the board of the Radio in the American Sector (RIAS) Berlin Commission and the American Main Street Initiative. Mr. Rough is also a member of the Friends of Ukraine Network’s (FOUN) Task Force on National Security and vice chair of the Reagan Institute’s Foreign for American Leadership Europe group. 

Mr. Rough is a native German speaker.