30 Items

A picture of a man marking off checkboxes

Andranik123 | Adobe Stock

Analysis & Opinions - Harvard Business Review

How to Vet a Corporate Intelligence Vendor

Demand for intelligence vendors is substantial and increasing. In 2022, global cyber threat intelligence was estimated to be a $4.93 billion industry, and U.S. security services was a whopping $48.1 billion. Geopolitical and security risk intelligence is an unquantified but essential and rapidly growing part of the story. But how do you know whether an intelligence vendor aligns with your company’s needs, risk tolerance, and ethics? The authors, from Harvard University’s Belfer Center’s Intelligence Project, have developed a database of 70 vendors that corporate intelligence professionals identified as informing their work. Their systematic analysis of this dynamic ecosystem revealed four key questions for corporate decision makers to ask in order to maximize their return on vendors.

Note: The authors have compiled a checklist accompanying this article, which can be viewed and downloaded from the Belfer Center’s website here.

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Analysis & Opinions - Harvard Business Review

Intelligence Vendor Checklist

As more and more corporate teams leverage private intelligence vendors to understand geopolitical and security operating conditions, it is critical for executives and their intelligence teams to ask the right questions. How should private sector entities ensure that intelligence vendors operating around the world aligns with their needs, risk tolerance, and ethics?

A photo of Kyiv

Eugene | Unsplash

Analysis & Opinions - The Cipher Brief

Ukraine’s Big ‘Adventure Capital’ Opportunity

| Oct. 16, 2023

Early after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, as Russian troops threatened Kyiv and Russian cruise missiles destroyed targets across the country, Oleksandr Kamyshin, Head of Ukrainian State Railways, received direct customer feedback that the bathrooms at one of his stations were filthy.

A man waving the Ukrainian flag with the Coat of arms of Ukraine insignia.

Kedar Gadge

Analysis & Opinions - The Cipher Brief

The Ukraine Diaries: Is Ukraine a Vital U.S. National Security Interest?

| Sep. 26, 2023

THE UKRAINE DIARIES — When I first visited Ukraine with The Cipher Brief in May, just ahead of the much-anticipated third Ukrainian counteroffensive, western commentators and media had raised expectations for dramatic Ukrainian breakthroughs. By contrast, Ukrainian military and civilian leaders were confident of success, but more muted in expectations. They did not predict or expect a Russian rout. Rather, knowing what they faced and that the going would be tough, they saw this as one phase of a long campaign.

Newspaper Article - The Cipher Brief

Intel Report from Ukraine as it launches Counteroffensive

| June 13, 2023

CIPHER BRIEF INTEL REPORT — During a recent visit to Kyiv centered around The Cipher Brief’s Kyiv Economic and Security Forum, a small Cipher Brief delegation met with a variety of representatives from government, business, and civil society, who conveyed a consistent and compelling message of unity and determination to win the war that Russia started in 2014 with the invasion of Crimea, and since February 24, 2022, when it launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

An entrance of the Lefortovo prison, in Moscow, Russia

AP/Alexander Zemlianichenko

Analysis & Opinions - The Cipher Brief

Russia's State-Sponsored Hostage Taking Reaps Rewards for the Kremlin

| Apr. 10, 2023

Paul Kolbe and Calder Walton analyze Russia’s arrest of Wall Street Journal journalist and US citizen, Evan Gershkovich, on espionage charges. This is the latest example of the Russian Federal Security Service's long practice of state-sponsored hostage taking and repression of the press. 

Report - Intelligence Project

Report: Marking the CIA’s 75th Anniversary: Reflections on the Past, Visions of the Future

Since its creation in 1947, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has been at the heart of supporting United States foreign policy and national security decision-making. From the early days of the Cold War to Russia’s war against Ukraine, the CIA has been a critical instrument of foreign intelligence collection, analysis, and operations. However, the CIA is often misunderstood, as its own work and history, particularly its successes, are rarely seen by the public. To help unpack this storied history, and in honor of the agency’s 75th anniversary, on September 16, 2022, former directors, officers, scholars, students, and the public gathered to discuss the past, present, and future of the agency. 

On the right is Miklhail S. Gorbachev with then Belfer Center Director Graham Allison on the left. With a Harvard Kennedy School JFK Jr. Forum backdrop behind them. 

Martha Stewart

News - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Mikhail S. Gorbachev’s Legacy

Former Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev, who is known for ending the Cold War, dissolving the Soviet Union, and changing the map of Europe, died Tuesday, August 30. He was 91.

We asked several Center experts for their thoughts on Gorbachev and his impacts – and how his life and actions are relevant to the challenges the world faces today.

Hijacked airliner headed toward World Trade Towers on September 11, 2001

REUTERS/Sean Adair

Report - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Countering Terrorism With "Blue Sky" Thinking

| May 19, 2022

In the past, strategic surprise has often stemmed from a failure of imagination. Most intelligence failures are rooted in a lack of foresight or early warning of impending events. Blue sky thinking seeks to prevent these surprises by devoting more attention not just to known risks and likely scenarios, but also to low probability, high impact events. In an unprecedented step in forging ongoing global collaboration, 129 global experts gathered in Amman, Jordan, in December 2021. The conference was held under the auspices of Jordan’s Aqaba Process and facilitated by representatives from the Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center’s Intelligence Project. Attendees included intelligence officers, diplomats, military officers, private sector practitioners, and academics representing 29 countries, 5 continents, and 68 government and private sector organizations. Through presentations and discussion under Chatham House Rules, the conference facilitated an open exchange of ideas on the possible next big threats from terrorism and on strategies for moving forward.