Rudy L. Hightower, II

Dr. Rudy Hightower, II is a retired US Navy Intelligence Officer. In his former US Navy career, he served in US and overseas assignments conducting intelligence analysis and reporting, and crafting Joint Intelligence Support to Military Operations policy and strategy. Currently, Dr. Hightower is a Senior Lecturer at the John Glenn College of Public Affairs at The Ohio State University (OSU). His professional expertise and academic research focus are International Security organizations and U.S. National Security Policy. Dr. Hightower’s research methods specialty is non-linear modeling and simulation. He formerly served as Project Associate in USAID’s Ukraine Parliamentary Development Project (PDPII) and served as a Resident Director of the OSU International Affairs Department’s Ukraine Study Abroad Program at Ohio State. He teaches a variety of courses including the Rebuilding Failed and Weak States, Public Management, Leadership in Public Organizations, Introduction to Public Affairs, MPA Capstone, and Policy Analytics, Modeling, and Simulation (PAMS) courses. Dr. Hightower is also the CEO/Founder of a private consulting company focused on developing and implementing non-linear computer analytics, modeling, simulations, and visualizations of complex public policy issues.

Email address:

Undergrad Institution and Major:
Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL – B.S.
Vocational Education
Defense Language Institute, Monterey, CA – Certified Basic Spanish Linguist
Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA – A.A. Graphic Design

Graduate Institutions and Major:
Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA – M.A. National Security Affairs
Thesis: Oceanic Sovereignty and the Law of the Sea: Fishery-Based Conflicts

John Glenn College of Public Affairs, The Ohio State University – PhD
Dissertation: National Security Policy Complexity: An Analysis of U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Program Effects on Political Terror

Interest Areas: Primary research interests are organizational capacity and interagency cooperation in Reconstruction and Stabilization (R&S) operations. Specifically, I’m investigating the effectiveness of both the current and historic U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security initiatives that influenced public R&S 'integrator' organizations. Employing both linear and non-linear research methods, specifically system dynamics and agent-based modeling, to contribute to conversations on whether the U.S. “Whole-of Government” interagency approach to R&S operations has had a positive, negative, or neutral impact on global stability and democratic consolidation. Also investigating the public policy implications of the China-crafted and led Belt and road Initiative (BRI) and its influences on and impacts to future public administrators.

  • PA2110 Introduction to Public Affairs
  • PA3500 Public Management
  • PA5700 Rebuilding Failed and Weak States
  • PA6050 Managing Public Organizations: Environment, Structure and Design Policy Analytics, Modeling, and Simulation (PAMS) system dynamics workshops
  • Data Visualization for Public Affairs using Tableau (forthcoming)

Grants/Scholarships Awarded:
2010 Chalmers P. Wylie Scholarship for Public Service
2010 Mershon Center for International Security Research Grant

  • The Declarations of Independence: Moldova-Pridnestrovie Sovereignty Conflict in Understanding Complex Military Operations: A case study approach. Edited by Karen Guttieri, Volker Franke, Melanne Civic Routledge, 2014
  • Iterative Storytelling in Public Policy: A Systems Thinking Approach, in Desai, Anand. (2012). Simulation for Policy Inquiry. 10.1007/978-1-4614-1665-4.
  • Keep Your Eyes On Ukraine. Policy point-paper submitted to the Office of United States Senator Richard G. Lugar. September 2008.

Research Institute/Industry Affiliation:
Founder and President of Hightower & Hightower, LLC, a private consulting company focused on developing and implementing non-linear models for systemic public policy analysis, conflict resolution, and international studies. H&H is currently building data visualization course using Tableau and co-editing a book on the Belt and Road Initiative.

Professional Affiliations:
System Dynamics Society

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Page Hall, 1810 College Road, Columbus, Ohio 43210

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