Most definitions of “intelligence” describe it as information processed to provide (fore)knowledge. Intelligence agencies not only describe and try to predict reality, but they also try to influence and shape it. Consequently, definitions that include only information and not influence initiatives fall short in preparing students to work in intelligence agencies and recognizing the different qualities required to execute intelligence’s two main functions: analyzing and influencing. This paper recommends that intelligence definitions include both its information and influence components. 


Bob de Graaff

Bob de Graaff worked at several universities and academic research institutes in the Netherlands before retiring in 2022. He held chairs for reconstruction after conflict at the University of Utrecht, terrorism and counterterrorism at the University of Leiden, and intelligence and security studies at the Netherlands Defense Academy and the University of Utrecht. He co-founded the Netherlands Intelligence Studies Association and the European Chapter of IAFIE. In 2022 he was presented with IAFIE's Lifetime Achievement Award. His main research interests are history and cultures of intelligence. 

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No. 11 Two Souls in One Body: The Acknowledgment of Intelligence as Influence Activity