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Intelligence Studies

Intelligence Studies, 2018-2019

Since the Second World War, intelligence and security services have played an important role
in policy and decision making, particularly with regards to a state’s national security. In this minor programme we study both the organisations, their working methods, their analysis techniques, as well and the political, bureaucratic, and social context of intelligence and security services.

What will you learn?

In this minor programme, you will learn about the structure, working methods, and the analysis techniques used by intelligence and security agencies in the Western world. Furthermore, the programme offers the choice to a specific focus on cyber intelligence, spy cases during the Cold War, intelligence failures, and the position and powers of intelligence services in the democratic legal order.

The minor offers classes from guest lecturers, who either worked or still work in the field of intelligence. Their expertise as (former) employees of the Dutch secret services, scientific researchers, business experts or as other intelligence professionals provides students with a lot of practice examples.

Learning objectives

This minor is called ‘Intelligence Studies’ and has the following learning objectives:

  • to gain insight in the functioning, processes and proceedings of intelligence and security agencies. The courses of the minor aim to offer a thorough look at both the internal processes as well at the external processes taking place at intelligence agencies. The program takes into account that these processes occur within a political system and within the realm of international relations;

  • to learn and apply the skills and craft of intelligence studies, with emphasis on analytical skill training;

  • to learn how to think interdisciplinary and how to apply qualitative and quantitative skills and methods;

  • to gain knowledge directed at specific elements of the intelligence discipline. The minor program offers courses such as qualitative and quantitative analysis techniques, the history of the intelligence organizations of the United States and the Soviet Union, intelligence failures, the relationship between the services and the government and Cyber security.

Target audience

This English minor programme hopes to attract students who have a keen interest in the work of intelligence and security services in general and the institutional, organisational, and operational aspects of their work in particular. Students interested in ethics, policy, and (international) politics are more than welcome too. Any foreknowledge of the issues discussed in the minor is not necessary, but students are expected to have affinity with security issues.

The minor is open for all University students, but preference is given to students from Leiden University, TU Delft, and Erasmus University Rotterdam.


If you have any questions, please send an e-mail to


The minor courses will take place in the Hague. The schedule provides additional information.


Schedule Minor Intelligence Studies 2018
All schedules are subject to change.

Practical Information

Practical information

Students from Leiden University can register for the minor via uSis from 1 May up to and including 31 July, via Usis 6000MINSN (Stud. act./class #1234).

It is not possible to follow single courses, as the minor is a consistent package of courses designed to help you build your knowledge in a logical and connected way. However, it is possible for students EUR to choose a 15 EC semi-minor consisting of the two compulsory courses, Introduction Secret Affairs and Qualitative Analysis Techniques for Intelligence Studies.

All Intelligence Studies courses are taught in English. Please check the individual course descriptions for more information.

The Course and Examination Regulation and the Rules and Regulation of the Board of Examiners will apply.


For your questions about registration for this minor
Check: Admission, registration and enrolment
contact 071 – 527 1111 or


Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2
Introduction to Secret Affairs 5
Qualitative Analysis Techniques for Intelligence Studies 10

Choose 3 out of the following options:

Counter-intelligence and Cold War superpowers 5
Unrestricted Warfare: Crypto, Cyber SOCMINT 5
The Gatekeepers: secret services in the democratic legal order 5
Intelligence Failures 5
Secret Affairs 2 5