National security and intelligence

Knowing how to collect, analyze and use information.

Probably there is no other word that carries behind itself suggestions as contrasting as fascinating as the term ‘intelligence’. Films and literature have committed themselves to evoke adventurous worlds, spies, plots, hidden stories, unknown heroes. The fact remains that Intelligence is the essential tool that the state uses to protect security. Today the web and new technologies have a predominant influence in this area. We asked a few questions to Mario Caligiuri, professor at  University of Calabria, one of the first to introduce the scientific study of Intelligence in Italy in the universities. What is Intelligence today? And how did it adapt to the new processes of mass globalization of information technology and technology?Proper use of information has always been decisive. Bill Gates wrote: “I have a simple but unshakable certainty: the success of a person or a company depends on how they gather, analyze and use information”. What describes the founder of Microsoft is nothing more than the intelligence method, that is the appropriate treatment of information. Intelligence today is a tool for everyone: social media floods people with irrelevant information and so there is a need to identify real and useful news to understand the world and make decisions in their own interests.Is there a change of Intelligence mission in our age?There is a precise date. It is January 7, 2015, the day of the terrorist attack at the editorial office of the Parisian satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. From that date, it is now time for the word ‘Intelligence’ to be recalled on television or in newspapers, understood as a fundamental instrument for guaranteeing the security of citizens. It was a profound transformation that saw intelligence being perceived from a dark place as an essential element for the stability of democracies, from factor for predicting the future  as
a tool for interpreting reality.Studying Intelligence at the University is one of many choices or does it respond to real and concrete needs for the country?University of Calabria has been a pioneer in the Intelligence studies in Italy both for the master’s and the master’s degree, but also for scientific laboratories and editorial series. Today there are dozens of Italian universities that are developing these studies, which respond to a deep social need connected with security, which is an increasingly broad concept and the premise of all social and personal development.We grew up, also thanks to the collective imagination fomented by cinematography and literature, with the idea of ​​the impenetrable secrecy that revolves around the Services. Bringing this world to the university can, to some extent, break its suggestion?In reverse. Instead, it means placing intelligence in its authentic dimension that is historical and cultural. The Secret Service has become a real literary genre, and therefore also a cinematographic genre, from the 1950s onwards, that is, during the Cold War period, which was a war based on spies, where information was the essential basis. It is no coincidence that many writers who have contributed to the success of the genre, from Graham Greene to Len Deighton, from Ian Fleming to John Le Carrè, have actively worked in the Services.