Strategic Intelligence

Welcome to the research guide for Strategic Intelligence

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"Your analysis and conclusions are only as good

as the research that supports it."

All library resources including print books, ebooks, and journal articles are searchable from the library catalog. When using intelligence sources, it is imperative that you check the integrity of your sources, especially of websites that may have a vested interest in a particular viewpoint. Library assistance is always available at askalibrarian@phc.edu

Defining your topic

Your project may include a specific country report or an analysis of current world leaders or a position policy report. Your instructor will provide the information on the specific type of project and the format required for the completed project. 

Subscription-only databases (not publicly accessible)

  • Library catalog
    • Search print collection, ebooks, and journal articles
    • Access Interlibrary Loans for items not in the PHC Library collection
  • Journal articles can be searched by title, author, keyword or phrase: 
  • PRO Tip: Need access to foreign language academic journals? The PHC online catalog gives you the option of choosing to limit your search to peer-reviewed journals in specific foreign languages for specific time periods. Simply use the menu on the left of the page to select "peer reviewed," time period, such as last five years, and the language of choice. Don't speak the language? Use google translate to translate possible subject terms and use those to begin your search. You can then use google translate to search the articles for appropriate material.

Best "how to" book on open source research:

Think tanks:

Think tanks for specific subject areas:

Security Issues


Capacity Building

Civil Institutions/Religious Freedom

Statistical information: country specific statistical information related to economy, military, literacy, human rights, trade, etc.

US Government sources

Arab World


  • English-language publications (note English-language newspapers may be government controlled)



Evaluate Your Sources (CARS)

  • Credible ? Is the author a recognized expert in the field? Is the organization publishing the document a recognized institution? Peer reviewed journals are good. Blogs may be acceptable if written by a credentialed expert and the author cites his authoritative sources.
  • Accurate?  Does the source show evidence of bias?  Are there potential advantages for the author in supporting a particular perspective, such as a financial or political advantage? Does the bias of the author offer needed insight into the situation? Do you have a bias that would influence your choice of sources? 
  • Reasonable?  Is the argument presented logical and reasonable? Are there leaps of reason or logic? 
  • Supported ? Does the author cite sources for facts or conclusions presented? Do other expert support the author's perspective or conclusions? 

Your project may include everything from a country report, to an analysis of current world leaders, or a position policy report. Your instructor will provide the information on the specific type of project and the format desired.

Professional library assistance is available on campus, by phone at 540-441-8400, or by email at askalibrarian@phc.edu .

Research Tips

  • Citation help needed? Try OWL (Online Writing Lab) for Chicago/TurabianMLA, and APA styling formats. 
  • Search by subject: Once you have located one item in the catalog, you can click on the search term within the record to find other items on the same or similar subjects. Once you have located a helpful source, additional potential sources may be found in the item's bibliography.
  • Can't find what you need in the PHC collection? If you are unable to locate an item in the PHC collection, you may request resources through Interlibrary loan. ILL requests may be made directly in the library catalog.
  • Research assistance is available in the library or by email at askalibrarian@phc.edu

Created: Watkins / Thornhill, 2015. Last reviewed and updated: Bauer / Pensgard, 2024.

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