Author Biography

Randolph H. Pherson is CEO of Globalytica, LLC, President of Pherson Associates, LLC and a Founding Director of the Forum Foundation for Analytic Excellence. He teaches advanced analytic techniques and critical thinking and writing skills to analysts in the government, overseas, and the private sector. Mr. Pherson wrote the Handbook of Analytic Tools and Techniques and co-authored Structured Analytic Techniques for Intelligence Analysis with Richards J. Heuer, Jr.; Cases in Intelligence Analysis: Structured Analytic Techniques in Action with Sarah Miller Beebe; and Critical Thinking for Strategic Intelligence with Katherine Hibbs Pherson. He has developed a suite of collaborative web-based analytic tools, TH!NK SuiteTM, and in September 2013 will publish the Analytic Writing Guide which he co-authored with Louis M. Kaiser. Mr. Pherson was a career CIA intelligence analyst, last serving as National Intelligence Officer for Latin America. He is the recipient of the Distinguished Intelligence Medal for his service as NIO and the Distinguished Career Intelligence Medal. He received his A.B. from Dartmouth College and an M.A. in International Relations from Yale University.



Subject Area Keywords

Intelligence analysis, Intelligence studies/education, Methodology


Often analysts will observe that they do not have enough time to use Structured Analytic Techniques. When presented with this challenge by analysts in the UK Cabinet Office, the author came up with the following response: Develop these five habits when you have time so that when time is short you have developed a capacity to use them instinctively. This article describes the Five Habits of the Master Thinker in detail, reviews how they were selected, and explores how they can most easily be inculcated into how an analyst processes information.