Communicating intelligence

Letizia Mortara (IfM CTM)

Even if it has been amply argued that communication is crucial for the success of intelligence systems, the intelligence literature has so far only marginally touched on the circumstances and details of intelligence delivery, indicatively proposing that two phases (Document and Disseminate) are dedicated to the transfer of the intelligence insight to decision makers. This research, building on the extant knowledge of communication and persuasive recommender systems literature, and the review of real examples of intelligence delivery ‘failures’, obtains a detailed framework of intelligence delivery which shows the various facets and range of circumstances of insight delivery. In doing so it identifies that in the process of delivery, 1) cognitive barriers typify the carriers of the intelligence message, as well as the recipients; 2) intelligence messages should be delivered differently depending on the expectation of the recipients (expected or unexpected) and of the type of message carried (whether it is opportunities, threats or if it is incomplete or controversial); 3) the range of circumstances met in intelligence delivery call for a sophisticated array of delivery approaches. In response to this need, the paper develops an initial set of tactics for intelligence delivery combining the knowledge of practitioners (extracted during a focus group) and the findings of the communication and applied psychology research.



Keywords: Technology Intelligence; Communication tactics; Persuasion; Decisionmaking; Technology Scouts; Barriers to communication; Documenting intelligence


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