Intelligence and State-Building

Understanding the Role of Intelligence Services in State-Building: The Case of Kenya

The intelligence sector of any state plays a major role in safeguarding national security, and in the extreme, it acts to preserve the very survival of the state. Even though maintaining effective control and oversight over intelligence services is as important to the democracy “as maintaining control over the armed forces, intelligence services have received much less attention from scholars and those supporting the democratization process” (Caparini 2007, 3).

The research available about intelligence services in developing countries is mediocre at best and research is virtually non-existent regarding intelligence and state-building. We know very little about the role of intelligence services in the making of states in general and postcolonial states in particular (cf. Goscha 2007, 100f; Chappuis and Hänggi 2009, 31).

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June 4th, 2010

Intelligence theories – a literary overview

essay-image“Don’t worry, it’s a slam dunk!” (Tenet cited in Woodward 2004, p.249).

If former Director of Central Intelligence George Tenet had known that those six words he was about to utter that December morning would become a symbol for the greatest intelligence failure since Pearl Harbor, he might have chosen his words more carefully.

Many have asked what Tenet could and should have known. Just as many have asked whether or not he was influenced in his assessment by various groups of policymakers to the extent that he was forced to provide an answer he knew to be false. Fewer have asked what the limits of intelligence analysis are, and even fewer have asked what can be known and where the boundaries of knowledge are drawn in the field of intelligence.

The intelligence failures of 9/11, Iraq, London, Bali, Madrid and Istanbul have enforced the notion of intelligence as broken, defective and in urgent need of being fixed. Among scholars, this debate has given rise to a surge of activity and discussion and has led to the notion held by many that the field is conceptually weak and in need of theorizing.

How are policies that guide the intelligence services formed and guided? On what assumptions are they based? What is the intellectual and ideological divide? Theory guides us to find these answers, and the study of intelligence must be carried on under this veil to be explicit. Discussions about intelligence theory and the development of conceptual and theoretical thinking about intelligence are here to stay. These discussions are vibrant and sometimes difficult, as new thoughts and provocative ideas challenge how things are and should be done. Even if the contribution of theoretical thinking to the field of intelligence is questioned, it will by all means revolutionize and open up the academic field of intelligence analysis. Theory has become the new “in” in intelligence.

Continue reading my essay here: Intelligence theories – a literary overview

June 17th, 2009

ESS, QUO VADIS?

Ladda ner rapporten: Case-rapport ESS

I regeringens utrikesdeklaration för 2008 uttalades ett starkt stöd för byggandet av ESS i Lund: ”Regeringen har tagit initiativ till att i nära samarbete med övriga nordiska och baltiska länder, bygga en stor sameuropeisk forskningsanläggning, ”European Spallation Source” i Lund” (www.regeringen.se). Uttalandet är högst intressant eftersom inget definitivt beslut om tidpunkt för byggstart och placering tagits men samtidigt stärker det mandatet för att få ESS till Lund. Enligt den senaste rapporten från European Innovation Scoreboard befäster dessutom Sverige sin position som världens mest innovativa land (www.proinno-europe.eu). Detta är säkerligen en viktig variabel när det gäller att förhandla ESS till Lund.

ESS som företeelse berör en hel rad olika aspekter såsom regionalt samarbete, vetenskap, internationella förhandlingar, sameuropeisk finansiering och samhälls-påverkan. Samtidigt är det så att många av dem ofta kommer tillbaka till frågor om demokrati och effektivitet, dvs. grundläggande frågor om hur våra samhällen är uppbyggda och fungerar

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March 10th, 2008

Without meta-narratives

Without meta-narratives: A meta-theory and its effect on the study of politics

1 Introduction

While natural sciences strive towards providing truth, meaning and understanding while contributing towards change fewer and fewer people seem to believe that the social sciences can contribute more than one (rather than the) truth, meaning and understanding while perhaps striving towards change. I sense that it has become in to reject positivism in favor of hermeneutics. It would appear that the last lines of defense for the positivists are starting to crumble after decades of heavy shelling from an alliance of everyone from realists to hermeneutics and postmodernists. It has however not meant that the ideas of the positivist are dying – rather they tend to have fled their base camp to avoid the heavy shelling. Today these ideas dressed in realist uniforms have started a factionist army advocating many of their old beliefs while still waging war on their old brothers in arms.

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January 20th, 2008

Södra Lapplands Kommun?

Kandidatuppsats-Framsidav2.jpgSyftet med min kandidatuppsats i statsvetenskap har varit att avgöra vad för effekt en sammanslagning av Åsele, Dorotea och Vilhelmina kommun skulle få på den lokala demokratin; i uppsatsen definierad av min demokratiska idealtyp.

Uppsatsen visar att den demokratiska enhet som skulle skapas av en kommunsammanslagning inte stämmer överens med den idealtyp som jag valt att konstruera.

En storkommun bestående av Åsele, Dorotea och Vilhelmina kommun riskerar att försvåra och minska det demokratiska deltagandet. Det demokratiska styret i en storkommun skulle påvisa bristande legitimitet och det skulle saknas en gemensam identitet. (more…)

September 2nd, 2007

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