Date of Award

11-2014

Document Type

Capstone-Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Program Name

Intelligence Studies

Capstone Instructor

Dr. James Hess

Abstract

Fusion centers were created after 9/11/01 to increase information sharing and improve intelligence production by utilizing information collected at the state and local level to enhance intelligence production. Fusion centers and their law enforcement counterparts engage in various parts of the intelligence cycle to aid fusion centers in creating quality intelligence products. A 2012 Senate report revealed that fusion centers are failing to produce quality intelligence. This thesis presents an exploratory research study to determine how to more effectively integrate fusion centers and state and local law enforcement officers together in utilization of the intelligence cycle to improve fusion center intelligence production. The researcher conducted interviews with federal, state, and local fusion center analysts in addition to law enforcement personnel associated with their fusion centers and their local police training academy to assess the current level of interaction. Through a comparative study, the researcher identified three specific areas in which fusion centers and their law enforcement counterparts can be more effectively integrated: knowledge of collection priorities, feedback, and communications. By increasing integration in the three areas identified, fusion centers would improve the quality of intelligence they disseminate.

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