Call for Papers: Intelligence and Technology

The historical development of intelligence is closely related to the techniques and technologies used in the process of collection, storage, use, processing and delivery of information and intelligence. At the same time, the development of new technologies revolutionized warfare, crisis management and diplomacy. In the past, security and warfare aimed for victory in the physical domain. Today, we shift towards an era of information and cyber conflicts, a move fuelled by constant advances in technology. Armed conflicts turn into low-intensity conflicts (LIC) where kinetic weapons are used side by side with ‘soft and smart power’.

Intelligence needs have traditionally stimulated technological developments. Signals intelligence, codes and cyphers, covert communications, satellites, and many other technological fields were significantly influenced by intelligence needs. Even before the invention of the electrical telegraph there were numerous examples were technology was successfully combined with intelligence to produce important political and military outcomes. After that momentous turning point, the proliferation of the telephone and of wireless communication revolutionized the relationship between intelligence and warfare. For example, analysis of the World War II is futile without taking into account the ULTRA success in deciphering the German Enigma machine. Nuclear deterrence cannot be studied without reference to intelligence satellite observation capabilities and other technology-based intelligence tools.

Information is no longer only a tool of intelligence, it is often the target itself.  Recent revelations on the scale of intelligence Sigint monitoring worldwide, including the NSA, the ‘Snowden Affair’ and Wikileaks, focused attention on the vast technological capabilities of modern intelligence collection.

The 2015 IIHA annual conference aims to explore past, current and future interdependences and interactions between intelligence and technology. We invite paper proposals dealing with every aspect of intelligence services, operations and activities relevant to the theme of the conference, of any period, from Alexander the Great to the present day. The conference theme is broad, both in terms of the periods covered and of the focus of papers. This will provide a wide discussion and a variety of themes relating to intelligence and technology. We especially encourage paper proposals from young researchers and doctoral students as well as from established scholars and former practitioners.

Special panels: The year 2015 marks not only the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II, but also the 25th year since the fall of the Iron Curtain, the end of the Cold War and the subsequent violent disintegration of Yugoslavia. Those processes had a tremendous effect on the second half of the 20th century. The conference especially welcomes papers dealing with intelligence aspects relating to WWII or to the wars in the former Yugoslavia.

Submission and deadline

Please submit your paper proposal abstract (200-300 words) and your CV by email to the IIHA Executive Director at a_abelmann@yahoo.com.

Please also indicate if you wish to make use of a PowerPoint presentation.

The deadline for paper proposal submissions is 15th November 2014.  Acceptance notifications will go out by January 2015.

Publication of Papers

Conference speakers are encouraged to submit their paper in the form of an article to the association’s Journal of Intelligence History (JIH) to be reviewed for possible publication.

Location: 

The 2015 annual conference of the IIHA is going to take place in Zagreb, Croatia, on May 8-10, 2015.

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