IC21: The Intelligence Community in the 21st Century

Staff Study
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence
House of Representatives
One Hundred Fourth Congress

XII. Intelligence Centers

                       Executive Summary

     The purpose of this study is to examine the seven existing
Intelligence Centers, assess their effectiveness, the need for
these Centers in the future, and whether the Centers "concept" can
be adapted as a working model for future Intelligence Community
organization.  The study will also make recommendations on how to
improve the functioning of the Centers.

     There are seven centers:  the Counterterrorist Center, the
Counterintelligence Center, the National Counterintelligence
Center, the Crime and Narcotics Center, the Nonproliferation
Center, the Arms Control Intelligence Staff and the Center for
Security Evaluation.  All the Centers are located in the Central
Intelligence Agency headquarters buildings in Langley, Virginia. 
The Centers were established to serve as "Community" organizations. 
In reality, they have a distinct "CIA" identity.  They are
predominantly staffed by CIA employees, and are dependent upon the
CIA for administrative support and funding -- often competing with
other CIA programs for resources.  This fact has made it difficult
for the Centers to be accepted as "Community" entities.

     At the outset, Centers must overcome bureaucratic impediments
and require a significant period of time to mature as organizations
and establish themselves as full players in the Intelligence
Community.  Much of the success of Centers can be attributed to the
quality leadership the CIA has selected for service in the Centers. 
In this study, we considered where the Centers should be located in
the Intelligence Community.  Also examined were the factors that
have made the Centers successful, and the problems that continue to
trouble them -- geographic barriers, bureaucratic inertia and
personnel management impediments.

     We concluded that, in most respects, the Centers have become
successful, established organizations that should continue to
exist.  In fact, in many respects, they are now indispensable,
representing the type of functional outlook and horizontal
integration of analysis and collection that will be critical in
addressing the complex transnational issues of the future.  Our
study recommendations include improvement on community management
issues, the need for periodic functional review, and a number of
suggested changes to the personnel system.

                      INTELLIGENCE CENTERS

Why Were Centers Created?

     The Centers were established to serve as focal points for
significant and enduring intelligence issues.  They function as
vehicles to pull together the disparate intelligence resources on
major issues in order to provide more synergistic collection,
analytical and management approaches toward a critical intelligence
problem.  They also allow the Intelligence Community to show its
responsiveness on major issues to the Administration and to
Congress.

     The Centers work because they have established valuable, even
essential roles in the Intelligence Community.  Specifically, the
Centers were created to meet certain perceived needs, and over the
years they have made themselves viable entities -- although not
necessarily as true "Community" centers with full Community staff
representation, as initially envisioned.  What the Centers have
done is meet the objectives that had been set forth for them and
become valued Agency and Community resources.  Moreover, they are
organizations upon which policymakers have come to rely.  

The Centers -- What Are They Now?

     Today, the Centers continue to address specific issues
identified by their names.  They draw, with varying degrees of
success, from personnel throughout the Intelligence Community. 
Indeed, the very name "Center" implies a certain degree of
Community orientation, or that the center is a "shared Community
resource."  In reality, though, most of the Centers have a distinct
"Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)" identity, are predominantly
staffed by CIA employees and depend on the CIA for their
administrative support and operating expenses.

     In a sense, the very name "center," is also misleading.  The
Centers are not true cross-agency organizations, and they are not
always the single focal point for work on an intelligence issue.  
In the case of the Nonproliferation Center (NPC), for example,
three National Intelligence Officers (NIOs) also speak on various
aspects of nonproliferation.  Moreover, the Director of Central
Intelligence (DCI) Community Nonproliferation Committee, although
chaired by the NPC Director, is a separate coordinating entity.  Of
all the subject matters upon which Centers have been formed,
proliferation is probably the most diverse across the Community. 
It can range from Measurement and Signatures Intelligence (MASINT)
research and development (R&D) to analysis on export regimens.  In
this area, probably more than all others, it is beneficial to have
a Center that can provide a centralized planning and coordinating
function for the Intelligence Community and between intelligence
and policy.  It is interesting that the role of the DCI's
Nonproliferation Committee is set forth in a DCI Directive.  By
contrast, there are no DCI or other directives that institutionally
identify the corporate intelligence authorities and
responsibilities of the NPC.  In fact, although it should be a DCI
entity, given its function, the NPC is contained within the CIA's
Directorate of Intelligence (DI).
    
     Each Center has unique features and, therefore, it is
difficult to generalize regarding their roles and missions.  It is
possible, though, to group the seven centers into two generic
categories.  The Center for Security Evaluation (CSE), the Arms
Control Intelligence Staff (ACIS), the National Counterintelligence
Center (NACIC) and the NPC most closely approach what might be
called Community coordination mechanisms.  The Counterterrorist,
Counterintelligence, and Crime and Narcotics Centers (CTC, CIC and
CNC, respectively) are more the Community's operators.  They
contain fused DI/Directorate of Operations (DO) line elements that
directly support certain intelligence activities.

     The Centers were intended to be shared Intelligence Community
resources with substantial representation of staff from elsewhere
in the Intelligence Community.  This has not occurred.  What the
Centers have become, though, are central repositories of
information related to their assigned subject matter.  Other
agencies, to varying degrees, have come to rely on the Centers'
data.  How the Centers differ from the National Intelligence
Council (NIC), another repository of all source analysis, varies
from Center to Center.  In some, the difference lies in the sheer
number of staff who work with the intelligence issues.  For
instance, the NPC can do more than the NIC in looking beyond the
immediate uses of intelligence to assess trends as well as
policymaker, analytical and collection needs.  Yet, actual
analytical work on proliferation issues is performed outside the
Center.  Other Centers such as the CIC, CNC and CTC are central
repositories and producers of analytic product and at the same time
are closely involved with operational activities.  Another way to
describe a Center such as the CTC is that it is like a DI/DO
partnership into which a Community partnership is inserted as well. 
The CTC has close-working analytical and operational components,
but considers itself the "one stop shopping spot" for intelligence
support to planning and execution of U.S. counterterrorism policy
in all its forms.  

Where Should the Centers Be?

     As the former CIA Executive Director, Leo Hazlewood, describes
it, the worst thing about the Centers is that they are CIA centers
and the best thing about them is that they are CIA Centers.  For
years, the chief complaint from within the Intelligence Community
was that the Centers are "CIA" centers.  By this, the critics meant
that because the Centers were located in the CIA, it followed that
their focus would be weighted too heavily toward CIA interests.  As
a result, according to the critics, other Community needs would get
short shrift.  There were also concerns over turf, with some
Community program managers feeling threatened by what may be
perceived as an infringement upon their responsibilities.  Of
course, similar complaints regarding turf have been voiced from
within the CIA.  It is not surprising that these complaints were
especially intense during the Centers' formative years.  The
complaints and critics have not entirely disappeared.  Nonetheless,
we have found that despite their CIA location and large CIA staffs,
the Centers, in varying ways, have made great efforts to
incorporate and accommodate the information, needs and interests of
the entire Intelligence Community and, by and large, they have
succeeded.  

--   There have been problems.  Some of the more conspicuous
     deficiencies relate to the Counterintelligence Center's
     information sharing practices with the FBI and others in the
     Intelligence Community.  The creation of the National
     Counterintelligence Center, with its substantial FBI and
     community representation, as well as the assignment of an FBI
     Agent to a senior position in the DCI Counterintelligence
     Center, has greatly improved the flow of information between
     the FBI and the CIA. 

     When Leo Hazelwood says that the best thing about the Centers
is that they are CIA centers, he means that of the entire
Intelligence Community, the CIA has been the one intelligence
agency willing to make the resource investment in these "Community"
Centers.  The Centers were initiated by the CIA and have been
staffed primarily by its personnel.  With the exception of ACIS,
CSE and NACIC, the Centers are located in the Operations or
Intelligence Directorates.  The CSE and NACIC are located in the
Community Management Staff (CMS).  From those organizations, the
Centers derive administrative support.  It is argued that this
support can be factored into their budgets at a significantly lower
cost than if they required separate infrastructures, either outside
the Directorates, or even outside of the Central Intelligence
Agency.  Administrative support may be more expensive if provided
by the DCI budget; if the Centers were entirely outside the CIA and
other intelligence agencies, their infrastructure costs would be
higher still as they would be unable to borrow or ride on any
common services or networks.

     Moreover, according to the CIA Comptroller, it is easier to
protect the Centers against unallocated cuts and/or personnel
reductions if they are located budgetarily within a larger
directorate, such as the DI, where there is a large pot of money,
some of which can be shifted to protect priority projects.  In the
current budget structure, outside the cushion afforded by a larger
program, they would feel the full brunt of unallocated budget
reductions.  Both the present and former Comptroller felt strongly
that taking the Centers out of the Directorates, therefore, would
be a mistake.  Any "independence" from organizational "taxes" on
Center budgets or constraints imposed by directorate viewpoints
would be of small benefit compared to increased vulnerability and
the added operational expenses that independence would mean.

     It is interesting that of the Center Directors interviewed in
this study, those who felt comfortable in their relations with the
directorates and saw no benefit in relocating their Centers outside
the larger organization were Directors of Centers within the
Operations Directorate.  Other Center Directors were troubled by
the number of times they had to give up resources to the interests
of the Intelligence Directorate in which they resided and felt
their Centers should be made independent, or had succeeded in
becoming independent of that Directorate so that they would not
continue to lose funding and personnel to other programs.  One
Center had managed to get itself moved outside of the Intelligence
Directorate for just this reason.
  
Looking Forward

     Taking these arguments for budgetary protection into account,
discomfiture remains about the vulnerability of the Centers to the
interests and funding objectives of the directorates in which they
reside.  The protection against unallocated cuts is a persuasive
argument, but it assumes reductions will continue, and that the
Centers cannot be protected in any other manner.  In addition,
those Centers that reside within the CIA's Intelligence or
Operations Directorates will continue to draw criticism for being
CIA entities.  Finally, we believe that the Center concept presents
the right direction for future management on major issues, but only
if their structure presents the right sense of corporateness.  The
study, therefore, concludes that the best solution is to relocate
as many Centers as possible out of CIA directorates to where they
can be perceived as having the most "Community" flavor.  It is
possible, however, that this may not mean out of the CIA as
envisioned in IC21.  (See the Intelligence Community Management
staff study.) 
     
What Makes Centers Work?

     For Centers to become fully functioning in today's
Intelligence Community, they need time to establish their place in
the intelligence bureaucracy, they need the leadership and
commitment to make them work, and they must readily adapt their
structure and activities to remain relevant.

Centers Need Time to Mature

     It takes time for a Center to become effective.  Forming a
Center to address a Community issue in a centralized way does not
mean once the Center is "stood up" that the Center mission is fully
functional.  Consistently, those interviewed in this study felt
that Centers needed time to mature as organizations and to
establish themselves as viable institutions within the intelligence
bureaucracy.  Some have suggested that this process takes a minimum
of five years.  Even those tasked with getting the newer Centers
running, and who thoughtfully sought to apply lessons learned from
the struggles of older Centers, discovered that, despite their best
efforts, they seemed bound to a five-year "principle."
   
     DCI Directives can establish a Center in name, and will
outline the Center's mission and responsibilities.  Only time and
effort can make a Center, functionally, a Community Center.   If
one also takes into account the administrative expense of setting
up new offices and transferring the personnel to staff it, one
understands that establishing a Center is not a short-term
solution.
  
Centers Need Good Leadership

     It seems a given that the successful director of a new Center
must become involved in struggles over bureaucratic turf. 
Establishing new relationships requires sheer force of personality
and excellent personal relations skills.  In addition, the
directors must be able to support their employees both within and
without the Center.  All Center employees are detailees.  Centers
are faced with a common perception that career advancement can be
slowed by assignment to a Center.  Overcoming that perception so
that good quality staff will be attracted to the Center is
important to any Center's overall success.  Thus, all of the
directors have found it necessary to go the extra mile to support
employees in the personnel review process.  In the future, reforms
to the personnel appraisal process may relieve some of the burden
on the directors by providing a clear process by which employees
can be evaluated for "out of directorate or agency" contributions. 
These reforms will be discussed in greater detail at a later point
in this study.   

Centers Must Be Flexible

     Due to their own initiative or, as a result of change imposed
from outside, the Centers have had to respond quickly to change or,
if need be, to reinvent themselves.  Centers, like all
organizations, run the risk of becoming stagnant or behind the
times.  The Centers must change their organizational structures and
activities in a timely way to be able to demonstrate their
continued importance, a factor that is of great importance to
Centers, as they are the natural competitors with line
organizations.

     Although interviews with Center personnel revealed a
commitment to keeping their organizations flexible and able to
change, in reality, changes requiring additional funding and
personnel may be impeded by the needs and interests of the larger
organization in which some of the Centers are presently located. 
There have been a number of occasions when the Centers in the
Intelligence Directorate have had to give up funding for other
Directorate needs.  On the other hand, Directorates have given up
personnel and funding to augment Centers with missions the
Directorate felt were of utmost importance.  This has been most
noticeable in the Operations Directorate.  Taking these histories
into account, the study concludes that flexibility in Center
programs might be best achieved if the Centers were placed in a
separate Community account that would subject them to fewer
competing interests.  Flexibility might also be enhanced by a "seed
monies" account.  Over the past few years, "seed money" provided to
the Centers has helped the Centers initiate certain technological
developments throughout the intelligence community.  
     
Looking Forward

     The need for time to become established, the need for good
leadership, and the ability to change are essentials that are
required now for Centers and will be in the future as well.  Again,
looking into the future, there are some factors that may diminish
Community resistance to the Center concept.  Resistance to Centers
appears primarily in the form of bureaucratic turf battles or, on
a more personal level, negative perceptions about the impact of
out-of-directorate (or agency) detailing upon one's career.  The
future should bring improvement to these problems as, over time,
the number of people who have served in the Centers grows. 
Interestingly, although downsizing has an adverse impact on the
ability of Centers to obtain personnel from other agencies, it has
a positive effect on the Center efforts.  Computer automation
developments such as joint data bases, congressional pressure to
reduce duplication, and relaxed compartmentation standards have
provided the impetus to work more joint activities, with a
resulting increase in intra-agency assignments.   Downsizing has
also pushed short-staffed agencies toward greater cooperation and
teamwork.  Another factor operating in the Centers favor is that,
as time goes by, there will be an ever growing number of people who
have served in the Centers and have returned to their respective
agencies with a more "corporate outlook."   These factors, and the
resultant impact on the milieu in which the Centers find
themselves, will not change in the foreseeable future.

     No matter how well-led and flexible a Center organization
might be, like any organization it is in danger of becoming self-
perpetuating.  As part of their coordination effort, Centers
frequently establish new working relationships where none existed
before.  This is one of the great benefits the Centers offer the
Intelligence Community.  However, once these processes become
established, it may be appropriate for the Center to disengage and
permit the activity to continue without Center involvement.  In
order to encourage disengagement when it has become appropriate,
and, as an overall review of roles and missions, we recommend that
a five-year review process be required of each Center to assess all
ongoing Center activities and to rule on the need for its
continuation.

Barriers and Impediments to Making Centers Work

     There are three kinds of barriers to making Centers work.  The
first barrier consists of the problems inherent in establishing a
Center's role in the Intelligence Community and the attendant turf
issues.  These problems have already been discussed.

     The second barrier is a physical one relating to the far-flung
locations of the intelligence agencies.  This geographic reality can
be an impediment to detailing employees among the agencies.  It is a
lot to ask a National Security Agency (NSA) employee who likely lives
in central Maryland or Baltimore to commute to Langley, Virginia
for two years.  The geographic barrier and the turf barriers are
issues that must be resolved by leadership and management.  It
might be useful to consider a reimbursement policy for detailees
who must travel distances significantly different from what they
normally would encounter.

     The third barrier is a large set of institutional and
bureaucratic rules governing employee movement, evaluations, and
security.  It is in the realm of personnel management that the
Centers face some of their most nettlesome problems.  It is in this
area that this study will make the majority of its recommendations. 
 Like the geographic barriers, some of these obstacles can be
mitigated by creative and committed management that provides strong
direction and incentives.  Others can and must be changed not only
to improve the efficacy of the Centers, but to facilitate cross-agency
working relationships in the Intelligence Community of the
21st Century.  

Getting Good People to the Centers

     One of the perceptions that has plagued the Centers is that
there have been cases where they have been used as places to send
underachievers.  Early on, the belief was that managers were
sloughing poor performers and problem employees off on the Centers. 
Busy with turf battles and establishing their own roles and
missions, Center directors at first did not give their attention to
the quality of personnel.  However, the directors and the Agency
itself have given more attention to this problem in recent years,
and there have been improvements.

     Several years ago, as part of an overall review of the
Counterintelligence Center, the CIA Inspector General examined the
promotion rates and performance of the Center staff.  The IG found
the Center was filled disproportionately with poor performers. 
They also found that the Operations Directorate had been the
primary culprit in giving poor performers to the Center, not the
Intelligence Directorate.  An Inspector General study of the
Counterterrorism Center done last year compared the promotion rates
of those assigned to that Center to those serving in the
Directorates.  They found the DO had the greatest problem with
promoting personnel who had served in the Centers, all other
valuative factors being relatively equal.  In yet another study,
the CIA Executive Director's staff gathered personnel statistics on
the Centers and found that the Counterintelligence Center stuck out
from the other Centers in having a disproportionate number of
people who had not advanced in their careers at a normal rate
before coming to the Center.
  
     Additionally, in 1993, the former DDI, Doug MacEachin, and
ADDI, Dave Cohen, did a review of DI personnel detailed outside the
Directorate, to include rotations in the Centers.  Looking back
over a period of years, they found that the percentage of people on
rotational assignments outside the Directorate was steadily
increasing.  Their study also found that 40 percent of the people
whom the DI had in rotation fell into the lowest performance
percentages.  The proportion of poor performers was even higher in
the Centers.  As a result, the ADDI issued an order that no one in
the bottom tenth percentile could be sent to a Center unless the
career service, the Center director and the individual in question
agreed that they should go.

     Each of the Center directors are aware of the problems of
perception and/or fact that working in a Center is not career
enhancing.  All have taken a more aggressive role in the PAR
process and, with the exception of the NPC, all Centers have a vote
on the promotion panels.  Recently, the CIA Executive Director has
decreed that no senior level assignments are possible without an
"out of directorate" experience.  If Directives such as these count
rotations to Centers as an "out of directorate" experience, they
may, to some degree, help alleviate concerns about the impact of
Center rotations upon promotion rates.  Until employees are
comfortable that their promotion rates will not suffer when they
are out of the sight of their home division, the perception that
service in a Center can be detrimental to one's career will not
fade away.  This perception can only be changed by tangible
results.  We are encouraged by the current Executive Director's
interest in personnel management reform; many of the problems
highlighted above are now under review.  Such reform, however,
needs to be injected into the Intelligence Community as a whole, as
"out of directorate" rotations alone will not serve the Centers
adequately.

     From the Centers' perspective, any reform of the personnel
evaluation procedures within the CIA must include a process that
would provide more efficient and fair evaluation of the
contributions made by employees detailed to Center or "Community"
positions.  That evaluation should be meaningful to the division or
directorate to which the employee belongs.
  
     The DO has a central personnel system in which the Directorate
evaluates its employees across the divisions.  In the Intelligence
Directorate, on the other hand, each Division is essentially its
own personnel stovepipe.  The division personnel systems were
formed to track the development and contribution of analysts
focused on a specific issue area.  The focus on contribution to the
division coupled with the number of personnel "duchies" in the DI
makes it difficult to evaluate employees as directorate, Community
or Center resources.  As increased numbers of analysts are working
details outside their divisions, the DI has responded by creating
a rotational groups panel to improve the evaluation process. 
However, this is a patchwork-type response where a more sweeping
change to the evaluations of DI employees may be called for.

     The study proposes that the DI's personnel system be changed
so that it can continue to facilitate the development of junior
analysts, but also more effectively evaluate intra- and interagency
contributions made at a more senior level.  One way this might be
done is that employees up through the GS-12 level would be
evaluated by their home division.  From the GS-13 level onward,
personnel would be evaluated by a Directorate-wide panel.  Such a
panel may be better poised to incorporate into its reviews criteria
relevant to the entire Directorate, as well as overall Agency or
Intelligence Community interests.

     The problems Centers face regarding the evaluation of
detailees' contributions point to a more sweeping issue -- how
analytical personnel of the 21st century should be evaluated. 
Today's analyst spends a great deal more time on short-term
reporting and "corporate" projects than analysts of past years. 
Yet, the system that evaluates analysts still leans toward a
"publish or perish" or "what have you done for the division lately" 
mentality.

     The "out-of-sight, out-of-mind" problem can be a career threat
for an Agency employee on rotation outside his or her directorate. 
The problem is even more acute when detailees come from other
agencies whose evaluation criteria and procedures may be
significantly different.  Therefore, it is not surprising that
Center directors who are aggressive in seeing that good CIA
employees are recognized and rewarded, are less effective with
supporting workers who come from outside the Agency.  Presently,
the NPC and the CTC, two Centers that have taken on military
detailees, are struggling, for example, to find a way to make their
evaluations of performance coherent and meaningful to DoD military
evaluation criteria.
  
Additional Personnel-Related Problems

     Another suggestion that was brought up frequently during this
study was the need to reform the CIA's Personnel Assessment Report
(PAR) process.  Too often PARs are put together by managers less as
an evaluation of an employee than as a package designed to get
someone promoted.
  
     The Centers presently possess a mixture reimbursable and non-
reimbursable billets.  In fact, the same is true of many offices or
groups throughout the Intelligence Community that have detailees
from other agencies.  The issue of reimbursable versus
nonreimbursable billets must be explored further, for it is
possible that a Community-wide policy of reimbursable billets might
make loaning personnel to Centers or other agencies less
burdensome, particularly for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA),
which must count that detailee against numbers remaining in DIA
offices.

     Although work is being done on developing Community security
policies, certain policies are not consistent across agencies. 
From the Center perspective, many object to the imposition of CIA
security regulations that are imposed on Center staff, especially
polygraphs.  This impedes getting detailees to serve on the
Centers.   

The "Virtual" Center

     Conventional wisdom is that there is no substitute for people
working together, face-to-face.  Nonetheless, there remains a sense
that the advent of common data bases across agencies, video
conferencing capabilities and other forms of electronic
communications -- not the least of which the secure telephone and
fax -- might make it possible, for example, for counterterrorism
offices of different agencies to work as a virtual center from
their desks in their respective agencies.  Yet, try as we may, it
is hard to subtract the human contact equation and come up with a
dynamic, workable model.  To establish a new organization, develop
a new cross-Community cooperative process or focus on quick moving
issues like terrorism requires intensive, face-to-face interaction. 
It is true, however, that Centers can and do establish new working
relationships that are facilitated by Community data bases and
video conferencing.  Once these working relationships are
established, the Center itself may no longer be required.

Imagery Management and the Centers

     Several years ago, the NPC assumed the role of the
nonproliferation imagery manager for the Intelligence Community. 
In reviewing its management efforts, the NPC did a comprehensive
review of imagery requirements against worldwide weapons of mass
destruction targets.  As a result of their work to improve
management of the imagery deck, the Center found a more than three-fold
increase in meeting nonproliferation imagery requirements.

     The CNC uses imagery to support its counterdrug efforts.  In
working with DEA, the CNC provides that agency with imagery where
needed.  As this relationship began, the CNC found that the DEA
agents could not understand the imagery process.  In response, the
CNC established a Counternarcotics Imagery Working Group that would
interpret imagery used to assist the DEA.  In addition, an
agreement was worked out making the CNC the Executive Agent for
imagery counternarcotics targets, much in the same fashion as the
NPC is the Executive Agent for nonproliferation targets.  The CTC
staff is concerned about how its efforts in this area will be
affected by the formation of the proposed National Imagery and
Mapping Agency (NIMA).

Task Forces

     One area of consideration in this study was the relationship
between Centers and Task Forces.  The similarities between the two
are striking, although the functions, structures and duration of
the two differ.  A number of Task Forces have been created to
respond to specific regional problems, such as the Balkans, or to
focus on certain issues, such as strategic planning or Community
management.  The Task Forces resemble to Centers in that they bring
synergy to a Community that is fragmented.  Here again, the Task
Forces are a response to an Intelligence Community that is finding
a corporate approach to problems both necessary (due to shrinking
staffs and funds) and beneficial.  Unlike Centers, Task Forces are
formed presumably for short-term, ad hoc problems -- although the
fact that the Balkans Task Force has been in existence for over
three years suggests that "short-term" is not always the norm.

     Typically, Task Force assignments do not present the same
personnel problems such as concerns about the adverse effect on
one's career as a result of being detailed for two years to a
Center.  In general, work on a Task Force is viewed more favorably
-- in fact, the attention one can receive for work on a short-term,
attention-getting Task Force can be career enhancing.  Yet, like
Centers, Task Forces may incur administrative and bureaucratic
burdens associated with assigning or moving personnel on a
temporary basis.  Depending on the structure of the Task Force,
funding, interagency representation and space needs may also be
troublesome.  As with Centers, the issue is the "portability" of
intelligence resources across the Community and the ability to
"surge."

     We believe that Task Forces, like Centers, serve important
functions for the Community.  To be effective, however, Task Forces
need to be highly focused on specific, short-term issues, and their
continuation should be monitored, perhaps on a yearly basis, to
ensure that they remain responsive to answering the needs of the
specific problem or issue for which they were established. 
Finally, because of the short timelines that would, in part, drive
the formation of a Task Force, additional DCI authorities that
allow for shifting resources within the Community must be
available, and acceptance by the Community and the government of a
Task Force as the DCI's/Community's authoritative body for that
crisis must be assured without delay.

Centers in the 21st Century

     Many of the observations and recommendations in the previous
paragraphs relate to changes that should be considered, given
today's Intelligence Community.  The overriding question, however,
is how the concept of Centers relates to the type of activities the
Intelligence Community will need to conduct in the 21st century. 
We believe that Centers (and Task Forces) are valuable components
of the present Intelligence Community, and that Centers will
continue to be worthy organizations on into the 21st century.  The
"Center" meshes with our overall concept of a more "corporate"
Community that capitalizes on a more synergistic approach to
collection and analysis, and the interaction of these two
activities.

     As pointed out previously, there are two basic types of
Centers.  We believe that this distinction will, and should,
continue, as each type highlights particular strengths regarding
how intelligence is used.  As transnational issues become more
complex, coordination of operations throughout the Community (and
the government) will be a major key to a Center's success.  Of note
is the ground broken by the NPC in its interaction with the policy
process.  Although in some cases its activities have been to fill
voids in the process, NPC's operations specifically point out the
utility of intelligence in aiding the decision making process
without specifically directing the outcome (or the policymaker's
decision).  While the military is finding that intelligence needs
to be fully integrated into operations to achieve so-called
Dominant Battlefield Awareness, the same type of integration into
the policy process will be no less important.

     Finally, the NPC director's role as an issue manager has also
broken ground.  Congress directed that NPC develop a report that
takes a functional, issue-based look at the overall intelligence
budget for the FY96 submission.  The House Intelligence Committee
found the report to be a useful tool in understanding the
Community's efforts on proliferation issues, that we believe it
will be a mainstay approach for the future.  Although some have
qualms about some of NPC's activities, such interaction and overall
resource focus may well define the type of analytic and management
activities the Community will need to adopt across the board in
supporting the 21st century policymaker and intelligence planner.

     In order to achieve the type of synergist operations and
corporate mentality that will be required in the 21st Century, the
Intelligence Community will have to significantly adjust its
practices regarding personnel, security, resource management and
other issues that are seen as specific barriers that are found when
observing each agency within the Community.  Resolving these
problems is especially important for the success of the Centers. 
Some specific proposals and recommendations regarding these areas
can be found in the Intelligence Community Management staff study. 
Generally, however, we find that Centers should be the corporate
answer to major transnational issues, and should be managed as
such.

     In the other IC21 studies, we redefine the role of the CIA as
the Intelligence Community's premier all-source analysis and
production entity.  As such, this seems like the appropriate place
for most of the Centers.  However, it is clear that Centers should
represent the DCI and the Community and, consequently should be
directly controlled by the DCI, the Deputy Director of Central
Intelligence or, perhaps, the Director of Military Intelligence,
and not in some CIA substructure.  
     
Findings and Recommendations

1.   The Centers are successful, established organizations that
should continue to exist.  The Centers were created to address
critical, enduring intelligence issues; these issues will continue
to be important to U.S. national security for the foreseeable
future.  

2.   The Centers are in daily contact with the entire Intelligence
Community as it relates to their subject matter.  Because of their
responsibilities, they keep current with all aspects of their
topic, relevant policymaker needs and requirements, the
contributions of the various Intelligence Community programs with
which they work, and problems related to gaps and capabilities. 
Thus, we find that Center directors are best choice for issues
managers, in that they are, for the reasons stated above, best
suited to do the "racking and stacking" across the Community of
programs and resources.

3.   The Centers fall short in being the Community organizations
they were intended to be.  A critical shortcoming of today's
Centers is not the work they do, but their less-than-Community
composition.  Greater Community representation in the Centers will
help diminish the perception that they are "CIA" Centers.  Greater
Community representation also would improve the lines of
communication between the Center and the rest of the Intelligence
Community.   We believe that greater Community representation on
the Centers would help diminish the perception that the Centers are
"CIA" centers and result in improved communication, information
sharing and cooperation among the agencies.  Thus, there should be
a commitment, if not a requirement, that the Community's leadership
fill all of the Centers' Community billets.  Increased Community
staff participation in the Centers should be expected in the
future.  

Management

4.   We recommend that a mandatory five-year review process be
imposed upon the Centers to revalidate the continuing necessity for
all of the seven Centers' missions and activities.  This review
will include strong consideration of the management of high-priority
requirements across the Intelligence Community and the
Centers' contribution to the plans and activities designed to meet
those requirements.  

5.   There are serious questions to be asked about the
Nonproliferation Center that go less to its contributions -- which
have been significant -- than to its future form and function.  It
is unclear what pieces of proliferation management should be the
purview of the NPC.  Since 1993, Congress has been adding to the
powers of the NPC while, at the same time, CIA managers have
reduced its authority, personnel and budgets.  We believe the
issues management responsibilities should be returned to the NPC,
but that all other NPC activities should be subject to an immediate
validation review.

6.   It takes years for a Center to achieve a viable role in the
current intelligence bureaucracy.  The lesson to be drawn from this
is that a Center or a center-like structure may not be the best
organizational response to a short-term crisis.  The DO, for
example, is turning more and more to the task force process to work
crises.  There are many similarities between task forces and
centers.  In many cases, both must acquire office space, move
employees and establish cooperative working relationships with
existing IC offices.  If task forces are being established to
perform as mini-centers, they may not be the best or only solution
to short-term problems.  In fact, increased information automation
and joint conferencing capabilities may make physical collocation
of task forces unnecessary.  Centers and center-like task forces
(longer in duration) likely will continue to require collocation of
personnel.

7.   If the Centers were placed in a Community account, that
program might also include some special Centers funding, including
seed money, that could be used by the Centers to push Community
response to special needs or new technologies.  There would be
increased flexibility in planning, if that Centers special funding
were placed into a multi-year account.   

8.   The Intelligence Community should develop a consistent policy
regarding reimbursable or nonreimbursable billets in the Centers. 
In many cases, reimbursable slots would encourage Community
participation in the Centers.  An appropriate amount of funds
should be designated to fund reimbursable slots.

Personnel

9.   The geographical distance between the agencies that might be
represented in the Centers is a barrier to achieving full cross-
community participation in the Centers.  The study recommends
reimbursement for the extra travel required of Center detailees if
that travel exceeds 20 miles daily.

10.  Not only do the Centers find it hard to fill Community staff
positions, they also face the perception -- and sometimes fact --
that service on Centers is not career enhancing.  As detailed by
the study, there are reforms to Community personnel management
practices that would benefit the Centers.  The Centers need
assistance in getting qualified and productive detailees from
within and without the CIA, and a means to assure that the
detailees are fairly evaluated and their promotion rates are not
adversely affected by Center service.  It is important that the
evaluation process be revised to more fairly and accurately
evaluate the contributions of the Center detailees and other
detailees who serve outside their home office.  

11.  In attempting to respond to the need for broader based
evaluations, the DI has established a rotational assignments panel. 
It remains that the DI has as many personnel systems as it has
divisions.  The study recommends that these personnel systems
remain in place for the evaluation of employees below the grade 12
level.  Above the grade 12 level, these systems should be replaced
by a directorate-wide system which applies overall directorate
standards and the measures developed by the rotational assignments
evaluation process.

12.  Personnel performance evaluations should shift their focus
from skills to issues.  The National Photographic Interpretation
Center (NPIC), for example, has gone to this model.  They have
grouped together technicians, analysts and others together and
evaluate employee performance with regard the issue being worked. 
Where there used to be personnel structures for each skill
category, personnel management has been more efficiently
consolidated to an issue-focused process.  Evaluation and personnel
management conducted in this way would make it easier to evaluate
the work of Center detailees and the increasing number of other
intelligence employees working outside their home offices.