Analysis, Intelligence, International Relations, Interviews, National Security

Interview with Leon Fuerth

This post continues the series of interviews I performed during my dissertation research on Agent-Based Modeling, intelligence analysis and policy-making. My interview with Leon Fuerth was the first in the series, and provided me several insights that shaped my research and subsequent interviews (most of which have since been posted already). Importantly, this is one of three final interviews where the subject was not able to review the transcript and provide any clarifying remarks. While I do believe that my write up accurately captured his comments, it is possible that interpretive errors do exist that have not been corrected.

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Intelligence, Interviews, National Security, Science

Interview with Joseph Eash III

As my dissertation is reaching it’s conclusion, I am working towards making more of its research accessible via the web. This post continues the series of interviews that I performed as part of that research on Agent-Based Modeling and intelligence analysis. In the interests of full-disclosure, Joe was my boss for more than three years (2001-2004) when I worked for him as a research associate in the Center for Technology and National Security Policy at National Defense University. Under’s Joe’s and Desmond Saunders-Newton’s mentoring, I was introduced to Agent-Based Modeling and complexity theory. I owe Joe a special debt professionally and intellectually and am proud to have benefited from his mentoring. This interview was conducted on September 6, 2012.

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Analysis, International Relations, Modeling, National Security, Science

Kenneth Waltz, Iran and Nuclear Weapons

As I’ve been in the final months of completing my dissertation, I’ve had far less time to devote to the blog and topics that I’d like to spend more time thinking and writing about. While it is now beyond the news cycle, Kenneth Waltz’s recent essay in Foreign Affairs was quite interesting, but also misleading. At first glance, the policy prescriptive nature of the article was eye catching and challenging, and essentially continued his long-running debate with Scott Sagan and the rest of the international security studies community over the spread of nuclear weapons. The problem with Waltz’s argument, however, is less about his particular conclusions, than the broader problems of academic theory, models in general (both formal and informal), and their relevance to policy in the first place.

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Analysis, Intelligence, National Security

Interview with Paul Pillar from Georgetown University

I met with Professor Paul Pillar (PP) of Georgetown University on February 1, 2012 to discuss intelligence analysis, analytic methodology, and producer/consumer relations as part of my ongoing dissertation research. The conversation was illuminating in several ways, particularly with respect to relations between analysts and policymakers. PP joined Georgetown University after a 28-year career in the US intelligence community, and also maintains an excellent blog on current foreign policy and national security issues.

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Analysis, International Relations, Modeling, National Security

Interview with John Hanley, Director of Strategy for the ODNI (retired)

Discussion with John Hanley (JH), Director of Strategy for Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI). Prior to joining ODNI, JH served as an officer in the US Navy and held senior positions in the DOD. I asked John broad questions that primarily focused on three topical areas – the difference between analysis and analytic communities within the DOD and Intelligence Community (IC) based on his experiences, his perspectives on the current state of the IC given his role and position within the ODNI, and general comparisons between intelligence analysis and academic scholarship. Note: since the time of this interview on February 9, 2012, Dr. Hanley has retired from the ODNI.

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