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Strategic Intelligence

Welcome to the research guide for Strategic Intelligence

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Welcome to the the research guide for strategic intelligence.
Electronic resources are linked from here and from the library home page. You can also check to see what is in the PHC collection using our online catalog, Voyager. When using intelligence sources, it is imperative that you check the integrity of your sources, especially of websites that may or may not 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.
  • Begin your search with a general overview of the topic  which you might find in the CIA fact book for the country or countries involved.  Look for the names of persons, geographical locations, organizations, or events that you can use as keywords in future searches.
  • English newspapers from the selected country may also provide helpful information. Please be aware that their English language papers may be biased toward government policies. 

Expand your search

  • Books in the PHC on campus collection can be searched in the library print catalog Voyager or in the library's ebook collection linked from the library home page.
  • Stratfor provides breaking news and analysis on political, economic, and military developments from around the world.
  • Authoritative internet sites:
    • CSIS updated provides analysis on a number of current "hot spots," as well as continuing conflicts.
    • Brookings Institute provides research on topics such as international affairs, Homeland Security, defense, and crime. Select topics linked from the menu on the left of the web page.
    • Heritage Foundation provides research reports, fact sheets, lectures and commentaries on a wide variety of topics both international and domestic with a possibly more conservative filter.
    • Terrorism Trends Data Report tracks international and domestic terrorism trends, 2005 - 2010.
  • Journal articles are available in: 
  • Selected journals:
  • Interesting: Former CIA Chief of Disguise reveals details of the trade 

Evaluate Your Sources (CAAR)

  • Current - Do they represent the most up to date information on this subject?
  • Authoritative - Is the author credentialed to speak on this subject? Who publishes the book, journal, or web content? Are they reputable? Reputable authors have degrees or other indicators of their expertise. Publishers may be peer-reviewed scholarly sites such as Cambridge, Oxford, and Yale. Government sites are helpful, as well as think tanks, but review them for accuracy.
  • Accurate- Does the source show evidence of bias? Does it fail to support assumptions or cite its sources? Do other experts agree? Are you introducing bias by including only information that proves your thesis and ignoring valid information that might disprove.
  • Relevant - Does the information actually fit in with the topic and move the discussion forward?

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

  • Search by subject: Once you have located a potential source in the catalog, click on the subject term within the record to find other items on the same or similar subjects.
  • Once you locate a potential source, additional valuable resources may be listed in the item's bibliography.
  • If you are not able to find what you need on campus or online, you may also request an item through Interlibrary loan. Instructions for obtaining an Interlibrary loan are available in the Library Services section of the library website
  • Zotero is a citation management system that will help you collect and organize your resources and then seamlessly create footnotes, endnotes, in-text citations, and bibliographies. You can download and watch online tutorials, but you may benefit from a librarian’s help in quickly learning how to use Zotero.

Citation assistance required? Try OWL (Online Writing Lab).

Created: Watkins / Thornhill, 2015, 2016. Updated: Thornhill/Middleton, 2018.



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