New Plan for Intelligence Coordination Released

By Matthew Harwood

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has released its new strategy to make the nation's disparate intelligence agencies act as one.

"The 500 Day Plan," according to Mike McConnell, the director of national intelligence, will focus on six areas: creating a culture of collaboration, accelerating information sharing, fostering collection and analytic transformation, building acquisition excellence and technological leadership, modernizing business practices, and clarifying and aligning DNI's authorities.

Each focus area contains "core" and "enabling" initiatives, which are designed to deepen the integration of the intelligence community's people, processes, and technologies. The "core" initiatives are designed for  the intelligence community's senior leadership, allowing them to focus on the transformational elements of the plan . The "enabling " initiatives continue to facilitate the further integration of the intelligence community into one intelligence enterprise.

One critical core initiative highlighted by the Federal Times will be the creation of the National Intelligence Coordination Center.

The proposed National Intelligence Coordination Center would manage and integrate the collection activities of the nation’s 16 spy agencies, the directorate said. The proposed center would give Director of National Intelligence Michael McConnell more control over what kind of data is collected to make sure agencies are covering the nation’s intelligence priorities, the directorate said in a new strategic plan released Oct. 11.

Other "core" initiatives include recruiting and hiring a diverse workforce and creating a joint duty program to rotate intelligence professionals throughout the intelligence community.

According to the plan, the intelligence community needs a workforce "that looks like America and can operate in a global threat environment." The intelligence community therefore must make every effort to employ a diverse workforce across multiple cleavages such as language, ethnicity, cultural background, race, gender, and expertise. The plan says it will measure its success by how well the intelligence community can retain the talents of minorities, women, and persons with disabiities. The plan expects this initiative to give the United States the expertise and insight needed to fight the complex threats that make up the global threat environment.

The joint duty program will make joint duty experience necessary for senior rank in the hopes of creating senior leadership that has strong information sharing relationships and that can leverage his or her interagency experience and contacts to combat threats to U.S. national security.

The plan says it will promote the joint duty program by ensuring comparable promotion rates for professionals with joint duty experience, by establishing a joint duty leadership program, and by making sure the majority of new senior intelligence professionals have joint duty experience.

Because "transformation takes time," according to the document, the ODNI will review the progress that is being made every 100 days until the end of the plan's 500 day deadline.




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