Structured Analytic Techniques
For Intelligence Community analysts, the time-tested, intuitive approach of reviewing information sources, thinking through issues, conferring with colleagues, conducting analysis, and embodying their results in written products is not inherently flawed, but it is not enough. Structured analytic tradecraft to help users assess competing hypotheses, produce clear, well-supported judgments, and identify and overcome biases is sorely needed to complement and refine expertise cultured via long exposure to and experience with targets and topics.
Viable structured analytic tradecraft exists; related research has already proven its value and mission relevance. What are the obstacles to their inclusion into a standard analysis workflow? What stops analysts from embracing structured analytic tradecraft? How can create an “analysis culture” that naturally promotes structured analytic tradecraft as an essential element? How do we maximize the value of computational resources to an analytic workflow?
In order to answer these questions, the Structured Analytics virtual team will focus on three main efforts:
1. Supporting the integration of structured analytic techniques into ongoing LAS research, prototype-development activities, and, where possible, operational analytic workflows.
2. Exploring the application of a formal model of structured analysis and supporting related research into how such a model might both add additional rigor, insight, and repeatability to analysis as well as enable computation to aid that analysis in a more organic, seamless manner.
3. Promoting research on policies and procedures encouraging analysts to infuse workflow with structured analytic techniques.