Professor Kastor is particularly interested in the functional realities of governance. Most of Kastor’s research so far has sought to explore these issues within the specific geography of western borderlands. His current book project, tentatively entitled Creating a Federal Government, will extend beyond the geographic focus of the West to take a national perspective on policymaking. This study will offer a comprehensive analysis of how the federal government operated in its first decades of existence. In the process of writing Creating a Federal Government, Kastor is also creating a major digital archive that will reconstruct the scope and scale of the early federal government. It will contain a full listing of federal officials, both civil and military, and will enable users to analyze the careers of these officials at both the individual and aggregate levels. Creating a Federal Government continues Kastor’s commitment to interdisciplinary inquiry by bridging the gap between history and political science, engaging questions in American political development, presidential history, and institutional behavior.
In addition to his scholarly work, Professor Kastor writes and talks regularly to public audiences about diverse issues in American history. A regular guest on St. Louis Public Radio, he has spoken with numerous media organizations about the history of American politics and has written for outlets including The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, The Conversation, and Fortune.
Professor Kastor’s teaching includes a variety of professional development programs for federal, state, and local agencies. He teaches in Washington University’s Brookings Executive Education program, a partnership with the Brookings Institution, which provides ongoing career development for emerging leaders in the federal government. He has also conducted educational programming for the St. Louis Public Schools, the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency, and the Air War College.