Dec 2, 2020

How Spies Think: 10 lessons in Intelligence

  • David Omand Visiting Professor, Department of War Studies, Kings College, London

    David Omand
    Visiting Professor, Department of War Studies, Kings College, London

To understand the value of human intelligence and ability to sift through an information overload.

Context

Intelligence officers discern the truth. They gather information - often contradictory or incomplete - and, with it, they build the most accurate possible image of the world. With the stakes at their absolute highest, they must then decide what to do.

Professor Sir David Omand was the first UK Security and Intelligence Coordinator and was Permanent Secretary of the Home Office from 1997 to 2000. He was also the Director of GCHQ. At the 94th Synergia forum he will elaborate, through real life narratives from the Falklands to Afghanistan, on crucial lessons in intelligence and the ability to assess and analyze imperfect and incomplete information.

Focus areas of discussion

  • What are the key factors for good intelligence assessments?
  • Is there a need for intelligence framework to be extended to all walks of life in analyzing information?
  • What kind of framework is needed to sort fact from fiction?
  • Have we lost focus on human intelligence and become over reliant on technology?

Experts

David Omand
David Omand
Visiting Professor, Department of War Studies, Kings College, London