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Re-shaping Australian Intelligence

Author: Sandy Gordon

Volume 1, Number 1 (November 2005), pp. 27-58.


Non-conventional security challenges and the information and communications technology (ICT) revolution have radically altered the environment in which Australian intelligence operates. Despite some changes at the margin, Australia’s intelligence community is still primarily configured to meet the kinds of challenges it dealt with in the Cold War. This paper argues that the current intelligence architecture is inadequate to deal with Australia’s rapidly changing environment. It then suggests how intelligence structures might be re-furbished to provide Australia with a more responsive intelligence performance.

About the Author

Sandy Gordon was awarded his BA from the University of Sydney in 1965 and his PhD from Cambridge University in 1976. He joined the Australian Public Service in 1977, subsequently working in the Office of National Assessments, AusAID and as Executive Director of the Asian Studies Council and Australian Literacy Council. In 1990 he became a Fellow at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, Australian National University, where he worked on South Asia and the Indian Ocean. In 1997 he was appointed head of intelligence in the AFP, a position he held until 2000. He then became Co-Chair of the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific Transnational Crime Working Group and a member of the National Expert Advisory Committee on Illicit Drugs. Between 2003 and 2005 he lectured on terrorism and transnational crime at the Australian Defence Force Academy, University of New South Wales. He is currently Associate Professor, Centre for Transnational Crime Prevention, University of Wollongong. thegordons@homemail.com.au.


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