The factors impeding the implementation of information sharing between intelligence agencies

Sponsorship, Governance, and Planning Information sharing does not occur in a vacuum.

The factors impeding the implementation of information sharing between intelligence agencies

Organizational Challenges Amy Zegart Improving organizational performance is never easy. As sociologist Jim March has noted, success requires that organizations balance exploration—the search for new ways of doing things—with exploitation, the ability to harness new practices and jettison older, less effective ones March, These challenges confront all organizations, but two factors make them more acute for intelligence agencies.

The first is bounded rationality Simon, In the theoretical world, individuals have the luxury of perfect rationality, seeing all of the relevant options, assessing trade-offs with clarity, and making the best decisions. The real world is not as nice. Intelligence officials have the toughest time of all, confronting bounded rationality problems in spades.

Gary Cordner and Kathryn Scarborough

Their job is to give policy-making customers decision advantage amidst swirling uncertainty, missing information, enemy deception and denial, and fast-changing events that are often unforeseeable, even to the participants themselves.

The second acute intelligence challenge is secrecy. In the classified universe, of course, this structural secrecy is compounded by actual secrecy, which protects vital information from adversaries, but also compartmentalizes information, ideas, organizations, and practices to a much greater extent.

Page Share Cite Suggested Citation: Behavioral and Social Scientific Foundations. The National Academies Press. The chapters in Part II Analytic Methods of this volume mine an array of relevant literature for the best analytic tools to improve intelligence analysis.

Here, we turn to a different task: Examining a broad sweep of relevant social science research with an eye to identifying which organizational factors impede or facilitate effective analysis.

The factors impeding the implementation of information sharing between intelligence agencies

Worth underscoring, though, is the fact that social science does not offer ready-made instructions about how to make intelligence analytic improvements stick. However, it does offer some useful generalizations that can illuminate the trade-offs and challenges involved to guide more effective implementation.

Although organization theorists tackle vastly different questions using a multitude of methodologies, they all share an interest in understanding how organizations behave, and why.

For our purposes, the field offers three insights for improving intelligence analysis, described in the following pages. Critics frequently bemoan that government is not run more like a business, and recommend exporting private-sector practices into public-sector bureaucracies Osborne and Gaebler, ; Osborne and Plastrik, The data show, however, that most businesses are not run like businesses.

Consider survival, which is the most rudimentary indicator of firm adaptation Aldrich, Census Bureau, nearly a third of the 5. Census Bureau,Table Pfeffer and Suttonfor example, note that studies repeatedly find that the majority of corporate mergers some estimates are 70 percent or more fail to deliver promised benefits and actually end up destroying value.

Analysis of 93 studies covering more thanmergers published in peer-reviewed journals found that on average, the negative effects of a merger on shareholder value appeared within days after the merger was announced Pfeffer and Sutton, Even top-performing firms struggle to sustain their performance.

Of these, only three held the number one spot for more than a single year; 27 made the list once without ever appearing again; and just 71, or 3. These findings describe organizational adaptation prospects in the best of circumstances; adaptation challenges are likely to be far greater in public-sector agencies.

As AllisonMoeWilsonZegartand others have noted, private-sector firms enjoy key adaptation advantages that government agencies lack. First, market competition incentivizes firms to adapt or die. Indeed, population ecology theorists argue that private-sector innovation arises between organizations, not within them:Concurrently, the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) Intelligence and Information Sharing Working Group focused on developing guidelines for local and state agencies in relation to the collection, analysis, and dissemination of terrorism-related intelligence in the context of fusion centers.

Intelligence budget calculations based on an Office of the Director of National Intelligence press release, which reported the first post-9/11 declassified National Intelligence Program budget: $ billion for FY (Office of the Director of National Intelligence, ).

Since May , DHS and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), which co-chair the subcommittee, have added another DOJ field-based information sharing entity as an advisory member to help strengthen the information sharing efforts of the five field-based entities GAO reviewed (within DHS, FBI, DOJ, and ONDCP).

the intelligence information sharing interests of the private sector in the overall infrastructure protection mission with in the Federal Intelligence Community and other government agencies.

Intelligence sharing is "the ability to exchange intelligence, information, data, or knowledge among Federal, state, local or private-sector entities as appropriate." Intelligence sharing also involves intergovernmental bilateral or multilateral agreements and through international organizations.

Five types of field-based information-sharing entities are supported, in part, by the federal government--Joint Terrorism Task Forces, Field Intelligence Groups, Regional Information Sharing Systems (RISS) centers, state and major urban area fusion centers, and High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Investigative Support Centers--and have distinct missions, roles, and responsibilities.

The factors impeding the implementation of information sharing between intelligence agencies
Information sharing between agencies | ALRC