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Structured Analytic Techniques for Intelligence Analysis

Structured Analytic Techniques for Intelligence Analysis

Second Edition


May 2014 | 384 pages | CQ Press

This Second Edition of Structured Analytic Techniques for Intelligence Analysis showcases fifty-five structured analytic techniques—five new to this edition—that represent the most current best practices in intelligence, law enforcement, homeland security, and business analysis. With much more depth, detail, and utility than existing handbooks, each technique is clearly and systematically explained. Logically organized and richly illustrated, and with spiral binding and tabs that separate techniques into categories, this book is an easy-to-use, comprehensive reference.

Chapter 1: Introduction and Overview
1.1 Our Vision  
1.2 Two Types of Thinking  
1.3 Dealing with Bias  
1.4 The Role of Structured Analytic Techniques  
1.5 The Value of Team Analysis  
1.6 The History of Structured Analytic Techniques  
1.7 Selection of Techniques for This Book  
1.8 Quick Summary of Chapters  
Chapter 2: Building a System 2 Taxonomy
2.1 Taxonomy of System 2 Methods  
2.2 Taxonomy of Structured Analytic Techniques  
Chapter 3: Choosing the Right Technique
3.1 Core Techniques  
3.2 Five Habits Every Analyst Should Master  
3.3 One Project, Multiple Techniques  
3.4 Common Errors in Selecting Techniques  
3.5 Structured Technique Selection Guide  
Chapter 4: Decomposition and Visualization
4.1 Getting Started Checklist  
4.2 AIMS (Audience, Issue, Message, Storyline)  
4.3 Customer Checklist  
4.4 Issue Redefinition  
4.5 Chronologies and Timelines  
4.6 Sorting  
4.7 Ranking, Scoring, Prioritizing  
4.8 Matrices  
4.9 Venn Analysis  
4.10 Network Analysis  
4.11 Mind Maps and Concept Maps  
4.12 Process Maps and Gantt Charts  
Chapter 5: Idea Generation
5.1 Structured Brainstorming  
5.2 Virtual Brainstorming  
5.3 Nominal Group Technique  
5.4 Starbursting  
5.5 Cross-Impact Matrix  
5.6 Morphological Analysis  
5.7 Quadrant Crunching™  
Chapter 6: Scenarios and Indicators
6.1 Scenarios Analysis  
6.2 Indicators  
6.3 Indicators Validation  
Chapter 7: Hypothesis Generation and Testing
7.1 Hypothesis Generation  
7.2 Diagnostic Reasoning  
7.3 Analysis of Competing Hypotheses  
7.4 Argument Mapping  
7.5 Deception Detection  
Chapter 8: Assessment of Cause and Effect
8.1 Key Assumptions Check  
8.2 Structured Analogies  
8.3 Role Playing  
8.4 Red Hat Analysis  
8.5 Outside-In Thinking  
Chapter 9: Challenge Analysis
9.1 Premortem Analysis  
9.2 Structured Self-Critique  
9.3 What If? Analysis  
9.4 High Impact/Low Probability Analysis  
9.5 Devil’s Advocacy  
9.6 Red Team Analysis  
9.7 Delphi Method  
Chapter 10: Conflict Management
10.1 Adversarial Collaboration  
10.2 Structured Debate  
Chapter 11: Decision Support
11.1 Decision Trees  
11.2 Decision Matrix  
11.3 Pros-Cons-Faults-and-Fixes  
11.4 Force Field Analysis  
11.5 SWOT Analysis  
11.6 Impact Matrix  
11.7 Complexity Manager  
Chapter 12: Practitioner’s Guide to Collaboration
12.1 Social Networks and Analytic Teams  
12.2 Dividing the Work  
12.3 Common Pitfalls with Small Groups  
12.4 Benefiting from Diversity  
12.5 Advocacy vs. Objective Inquiry  
12.6 Leadership and Training  
Chapter 13: Validation of Structured Analytic Techniques
13.1 Limits of Empirical Analysis  
13.2 Establishing Face Validity  
13.3 A Program for Empirical Validation  
13.4 Recommended Research Program  
Chapter 14: The Future of Structured Analytic Techniques
14.1 Structuring the Data  
14.2 Key Drivers  
14.3 Imagining the Future: 2020  
Key features


  • Five techniques are added: AIMS, Venn Analysis, Cone of Plausibility, Decision Trees, and the Impact Matrix.
  • Three techniques—Quadrant Crunching™, Structured Brainstorming, and Red Hat Analysis—are significantly revised.
  • A new discussion of System 1 (or intuitive thinking) and System 2 (or analytic thinking) led to a new taxonomy of analytic approaches.
  • Discussion of cognitive biases and the role structured analytic techniques can play in helping analysts avoid, overcome, or at least mitigate them is expanded
  • Discussion of how to develop the Five Habits of the Master Thinker to use the techniques instinctively
  • Revisions throughout the text ensure that all material speaks to both U.S. and international audiences.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

Chapter 7

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