Intelligence in the Knowledge Society

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The international conference Intelligence in the Knowledge Society is organized by "Mihai Viteazul" National Intelligence Academy through its National Institute for Intelligence Studies. This academic event targets scholars and practitioners in the field of intelligence and security studies, as part of a long term effort to develop a specific Romanian academic perspective on intelligence.

The first decade and a half of our century has made the world of security and intelligence confront provocative game-changers. New levels of social unrest, aggressions impossible to attribute, (apparently) unpredictable migration flows, semi-state terrorist organizations like DAESH or cybercrime add to the anxieties law-enforcement, security and intelligence agencies, but also communities of citizens must face. If we add to this landscape the global economic downturn, the scarcity of resources and the increasing income disparity across the world, we come to understand that providing security to future world(s) is not an easy task, but rather a dilemma made up of complex, interdependent and interconnected variables. 
At the same time, security itself has become increasingly convergent with knowledge and technology. Agents of power, be they state or non-state actors, tend to employ new and complex tools: active citizenship, weaponization of identity, (r)evolutions of community thinking, collective empowerment and depowerment.

Furthermore, we see how subtle repressive mechanisms of propaganda and manipulation are also increased by the advent of information, communication and surveillance technology. And, in order to address these issues efficiently, they all need to be considered from a political, an ethical and a security standpoint. 

This is the reason why the 22nd edition of The Intelligence in the Knowledge Society International Conference (IKS) aims to explore multi and inter-disciplinary perspectives on the interaction, intersection and interdependence between the exponentially growing new technologies, security and intelligence. Last but not least, the conference will explore ways in which intelligence and security methods and practices need to be reshaped to address the challenges of asymmetric, smarter, better and faster aggressors.
In order to do this we invite academics, experts and practitioners from the classical disciplines of intelligence and security studies as well as e.g. IT&C, medicine, law, mathematics, social sciences and humanities to offer insights derived from each’s discipline, but at the same time, to speak to each other and to offer inter- and trans-disciplinary solutions to the problems that the security developments pose.


While the planet continues to shrink and security challenges diversify, with terrorists and organized crime gangs using the latest gadgets and high-tech weapons, the dangers that loom over the horizon include the use of surveillance or, conversely, encrypted communication, of 3D printing, bio-engineering and social networks for malevolent purposes, the possibility of untraceable aggressions and of using hybrid conflicts as means to subvert and revert the functioning of legitimate power structures across the world. Therefore, in the security studies section of the conference, we welcome specialists from various fields to study by reflecting on core themes like:

·        Revolutions of community thinking and power structures – implication for national security
·        New forms of good governance, active citizenship and collective security
·        Information and communication technology - dream or nightmare of security practitioners?
·        Connectivity, wellbeing and surveillance
·        Bioengineering the future of security
·        Belonging, conflict and the weaponization of identity
·        Identity, allegiance and the security implications of multiple loyalties
·        Understanding history, understanding  the future past of our secure environment

Intelligence studies and their instrumental use by practitioners remains a constantly changing and challenging endeavor, requiring interdisciplinary perspectives. We cannot overlook the fact that the sources of information diversify sometimes faster than the intelligence organizations manage to transform, that threats become increasingly multi-faceted, and aspects such as open source intelligence or the integration of INTs remain in need of constant reconsideration.

And while essential for evolution, multi-source intelligence is faced with the traditional barriers raised by specialization. Technological evolution opens up wide new vistas of possibility, yet amplifies vulnerabilities to a yet-unknown extent. Intelligence analysis methods, in their turn, have evolved considerably over the past years and their constant development as well as their usefulness has been consistently analyzed by academic intelligence studies. Yet, despite this accelerated evolution, constant improvement and systematization is necessary in order to keep up with new security threats.
Therefore, in the intelligence studies section of the conference, we welcome specialists from various fields to study by reflecting on core themes like:
·        Intelligence as a process, activity, product
·        Intelligence education between the need for secrecy and the competitive advantages of openness
·        Transformations of the organizational culture of intelligence agencies in the 21st century
·        The Cinderella complex of intelligence analysists
·        Technological evolution – amplifying knowledge or vulnerability in intelligence practice
·        Patterns of accelerated evolution vs. systematization of intelligence practice

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