By Gregory F. Treverton

This file assesses intelligence research around the major U.S. intelligence organizations and makes a couple of ideas, a few of which parallel projects that experience all started within the wake of the December 2004 laws, for example, create a Deputy Director of nationwide Intelligence as a focus for research, determine a countrywide Intelligence college, construct an extended time period research Unit on the nationwide Intelligence Council, and shape an Open resource middle for making extra inventive use of open-source fabrics.

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The middle level of the hierarchy involves more refined analysis of data from multiple sources and integration of that data into useful knowledge. A typical example is defining the characteristics of and developing performance estimates for foreign weapon systems. That means taking the intelligence data, in whatever form and from whatever source, and applying scientific and engineering models to determine the capabilities of aircraft, missiles, and other types of weapon systems. S. 3 In those debates, even some high-level policymakers were interested in analysis at this level.

18 ITIC seems, though, to target the majority of its investments on basic scientific research areas with limited ties to intelligence analysis and problems in supporting operations. Again, what is lacking is a systematic process that identifies analysts’ needs across the Community, surveys the larger defense and intelligence R&D community for potential efforts that could meet these needs, then follows the innovation through to technology insertion and user adoption. There are isolated instances and individual cases where this is not the case, but no true Community-wide effort to leverage common needs and solutions exists, and such an effort would be very cost effective.

Another is for the intelligence community to accept a more supporting role, focusing on collecting secret information on selected problems that matter and leaving the synthesis and more extensive analysis of the world to others. Here, the Intelligence Community would become more of a “systems engineer” for a sophisticated set of knowledge and perspectives pertinent to an issue or a threat. 4 Sherman Kent charmingly recalls his effort to add precision to such estimative words as “likely,” by defining them in terms of probability bands.

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