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Lauren M. Speranza

Director, Transatlantic Defense and Security,
Center for European Policy Analysis

Lauren M. Speranza is Director of Transatlantic Defense and Security at the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA). Lauren is responsible for leading and developing CEPA’s work on collective defense and NATO, regional security, and cooperation with allies and partners.


Her areas of expertise include transatlantic relations, defense and deterrence in Europe, hybrid warfare, and NATO-European Union relations. She has authored and contributed to several articles and reports on Russian and Chinese hybrid threats, NATO adaptation, U.S. force posture in Europe, and Mediterranean security, which have garnered attention in transatlantic policy circles. She has provided analysis and advice to senior policymakers at NATO, in the EU, and in the U.S. government and Congress. Her work has been featured in several publications and media outlets, including US News and World Report, Bloomberg, Defense One, Newsweek, and Real Clear Defense.


Prior to joining CEPA, Lauren was the deputy director of the Transatlantic Security Initiative at the Atlantic Council, where she managed a robust portfolio of European security and defense programming, policy research, government engagement, and business development. Her focus areas included Nordic-Baltic security, Europe’s southern neighborhood, and NATO’s future. In this capacity, she also played a leading role in managing NATO’s official public diplomacy efforts (“NATO Engages”) around the Alliance’s 70th anniversary and last three summits. Previously, Lauren worked with start-up Horizon Intelligence as a political and security risk analyst. She also worked with the International Affairs Council in Raleigh and several North Carolina state political campaigns. Lauren has also been a fellow with the Atlantik-Brücke program.


Originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Lauren graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Elon University with a BA in Political Science and International Studies and a concentration in European Studies. Lauren also earned an MA in International Conflict and Security from the Brussels School of International Studies in Belgium, where she graduated as Valedictorian and received the John McGregor Award for Best Post-Grad Performance.