DHS Office of Intelligence & Analysis Examines Key Initiatives

1 min read

US_House_CommitteeThe Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Intelligence and Analysis discussed their vision and goals yesterday, May 12, 2010. Under Secretary and CIO for DHS Caryn Wagner and the Principal Deputy Under Secretary Bart Johnson appeared before the House Committee on Homeland Security.

The Office of Intelligence and Analysis has an “overarching vision to be the trusted leader in meeting our nation’s homeland security intelligence needs.” Since Wagner’s nomination in February she has spent extensive time reviewing the mission, roles and functions of the office.

After the examination, Wagner is now focusing on executing the vision by maximizing support of their core customers and by taking better advantages of their resources.

The initiatives that are underway that support the mission are supporting the state and local fusion centers, strengthening the DHS intelligence enterprise, providing first-rate analytic information to core customers, and improving management and processes. Wagner explained each of these in great detail.

“With your support, the leadership of Secretary Napolitano, and the fine men and women of I&A, I believe we can accomplish our goals and fulfill these imperatives. I look forward to keeping the Subcommittee apprised of I&A’s continued progress,” said Wagner in front of the committee.

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  1. Ms. Wagner’s description of her planed restructuring (as described in her May 12 testimony) is not substantially different from the reorganization instituted by Bart Johnson who has been acting as the Under Secretary. The problems with I&A are not in how it is organized but with its lack of a set of strong, inovative, and dynamic second level managers, a long history of weak personnel recruitment, training, motivation, and retention, and an historic inability to work effectively with the DHS component intelligence organizations. DHS I&A’s perception of its mission and key “customers” has changed frequently and with each change has come a reorientation of demands on its staff and a continuation of the confusion felt by that staff. Though there have been periodic efforts to address the poor employee moral (I&A routinely falls near the bottom in both OPM and DNI employee surveys), the core underlying problems -poor leadership, unclear mission/expectations, inadaquate training- continue to plague the agency.

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