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01 July 2021
International Journal of Intelligence and CounterIntelligence
Special Issue Editor(s)
Rey Juan Carlos University (Spain)
National Intelligence Academy (Romania)
National Intelligence Academy (Romania)
Looking for Diversity in Intelligence: Organizations, Processes, and People
Intelligence as a field of study and practice holds several inherent obstacles to diversity and inclusion that are intrinsic to its development. Let us remember that organizational cultures of intelligence are based on an essentially set of norms and values that are not to be questioned. Hence, boundaries become in their turn difficult to interrogate. Nevertheless, in the last two decades, the practice of intelligence has expanded from the traditional, in-silos practice of governmental organizations to a fluid framework that brings together various state, non-state and private actors and their continuous changing performances. A tension is hence set between various communities of practitioners, reflecting diversity, but making all the more difficult communication and interaction between them.
With the practice advancing beyond formal norms, intelligence is set to advance to match these changes with an adequate understanding - of their nature, implications and effects at organizational, society, and state security level. This movement is set to lead to an inevitable opening of intelligence cultures to various forms of diversity. Today, intelligence may be defined more as a “social phenomenon” where interacting actors define new norms of diversity, acceptability and inclusion which need to be charted and defined.
Secondly, intelligence has also become increasingly accountable to governmental, media and civil society, while its mix of secrecy, and openness, and its cultural normativity are redefined by technological advancements and globalized communities of practice etc. Hence, the delineating lines of the intelligence communities of knowledge creation are more than ever drifting, moving freely through history, political science, communication, sociology, psychology, and international relations.
Thirdly, when looking into the contributions this literature brought to the understanding and improving of intelligence, one may conclude that intelligence theory and practice is solely discussed and presumably performed in a minority of cultural and geographical spaces, and what’s even more challenging, in insular professional and organizational bubbles, that seem rather detached from each other. As a result, significant lessons learnt, and valuable contributions are overshadowed by the lack of representation.
Many consequences may be inferred from this status quo and the most relevant is the impossibility to achieve a fair sense of representation and homogeneity of the conceptual framework. The more the cannon admits and voices only certain representations, the less chances for integration of diverse perspectives are held. And a common strategic culture and theory shall be impossible in the absence of inclusion. Lack of appropriate representation in turn affects the development of consolidated standards on education and the integration of innovation in the everyday life of practitioners.
Hence, this special issue embraces a critical perspective and welcomes articles that: interrogate the status quo of diversity and inclusion in intelligence organizations, the extent to which intelligence theory and practice assess and advance diversity and inclusion as paradigms of thought and as actionable principles, and that reflects upon diversity as driver for reforms in intelligence organizations, for enhancing cultural awareness practices and norms, diverse professional competences and ethical values, etc.
This special issue of the International Journal for Intelligence and Counterintelligence welcomes but is not limited to contributions that address the following questions/issues:
- How diversity and inclusion provide strengths to the intelligence function?
- Is diversity as a cultural norm an intrinsic or extrinsic quality to intelligence culture, education and practice?
- What are the obstacles to diversity and inclusion that intelligence is confronted with - as a practice, as a field of study and as an organization?
- Is the intelligence curriculum designed for developing “cultural competency”?
- Is the ethos of the intelligence community inclusive of minorities - of gender, race, cultural and theoretical background?
- How can diversity and inclusion be extended beyond organizational strategies and into the practice of an intelligence organization?
- Are diversity and inclusion policies enough in order to foster change in intelligence?
- Organizational case studies in gender and cultural diversity
- Which are the opportunities for non-native English-speaking academics to contribute to the emerging field of intelligence studies? Which are the lessons learnt from previous experiences?
- What are the cultural normative voices in intelligence?
- Whose voices are heard in intelligence theory and education and whose tend to be silenced?
- Who counts in setting the norms and ethical values of intelligence communities?
- Are diverse communities of practice in intelligence developing distinct norms and values? If so, what are the implications for the practice of intelligence?
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