2020/07/13: Hello Again, World

2020 marks the tenth anniversary of i-intelligence. Getting here has been quite a journey. The company was conceived in the middle of a global financial crisis and finds itself celebrating its tenth anniversary in the midst of a pandemic.

Events then, now and in-between have underscored the relevance of our founding mission - to improve the research and analytic literacies of professionals everywhere. We have spent the last ten years crisscrossing the planet doing just that and much more besides.

The recent lockdown has offered us pause from this frenetic pace. It has given us the opportunity to implement those ideas we’ve been toying with for far too long, and to reassess those we had previously abandoned. This blog is one of them.

We don’t claim to have a monopoly of good ideas on the practice of intelligence, but we have spent a long time applying and honing the state of the art, and we wish to share the fruits of this labour with a wider audience.

Why? Our answer here is twofold. First, because the order of the day demands that we do. We are entering a decade of profound change and heightened competition. The risks to be managed and the opportunities to be capitalised on will be considerable. Those who prosper are those who can leverage the world’s most abundant resource - information - to their advantage.

Doing so obliges you to develop a broad range of intelligence-related literacies - research and analysis being the most obvious. Expanding these literacies is key to improving the resilience of organisations and individuals, to say nothing of the states and societies they operate in. Of course, what qualifies as an “intelligence literacy” is a matter of perspective. We take the broadest possible view here, knowing that no definition is sufficient, and that all definitions evolve over time. In any event, for the architecturally minded, intelligence is both plinth and capital, two stones that help us bear ever-weightier burdens.

Our second answer is blunter still: because the practice of intelligence is pivotal to managing the “Long Crisis” that began with the toppling of the Twin Towers and will continue past the end of this decade. Events this year have proven yet again the importance of analysis, foresight, critical judgement and creative ideation - qualities an intelligence skillset is guaranteed to impart. The economic, social, political and geopolitical transitions initiated or accelerated by COVID-19 are now in play. It stands to reason that the tools needed to understand and manage these phenomena be extended to as many people as possible.

I close out this post by thanking all who have accompanied our journey over the past decade. Your trust and support have been invaluable. Thanks too to Peter Kaithan and Lori Kaithan for helping us get the project off the ground in its early days, and whose counsel as innovators and educators I still value.

Chris Pallaris
Director, i-intelligence GmbH