Wikistrat: The world’s first crowdsourced consultancy
Wikistrat operates a global network of over 2,200 subject-matter experts working collaboratively via our online platform to help decision-makers identify solutions to complex strategic challenges. The crowdsourced approach enables public and private sector clients to obtain deeper insights about the future – as well as plan more creative policy options and strategies – with unparalleled speed and cost efficiency.
Wikistrat’s crowdsourcing methodology – Collaborative Competition™ – allows for the generation of diverse and interdisciplinary insights unavailable through traditional analysis, with complete transparency and client interactivity. We leverage our experience of having conducted hundreds of crowdsourced studies and simulations to deliver a range of bespoke analytic services, including:
- Prediction and early warning
- Scenario planning
- Strategic forecasting
- On-the-ground collection
- Innovative policy recommendations
- Real-time analysis and monitoring of geopolitical affairs
- Modeling complex environments through the combination of big data and crowdsourcing
Wikistrat strives to promote a world in which global leaders in government and business are able to quickly and efficiently leverage the immense expertise that lies outside of their traditional reach. We believe there is wisdom in the expert crowd – wisdom that is essential for dealing with an increasingly complex world. Through our crowdsourcing network, we work to promote international security and stability, whilst advancing responsible governance and accountability.
Our mission is to deliver real-time intelligence, diverse perspectives and rigorous strategic analysis to support decision-makers facing complex challenges. Wikistrat stands available to provide analytic integrity by leveraging transparent, open-source methodologies and platforms to support clients from around the world.
Advisors and Testimonials
“Intelligence is no longer just stolen secrets, but the wisdom of knowledgeable observers. Wikistrat delivers exactly that.”
General (ret.) Michael V. Hayden, Former Director CIA, Former Director NSA
“Wikistrat deploys exciting capabilities for highest-level clients to provide predictive analysis, and support risk assessment, contingency early warning and response, and strategic planning, by leveraging technology in a way that is very impressive.”
General (ret.) James L. Jones, Former National Security Advisor to the President of the United States of America
“Wikistrat clients gain global access to world-class experts who provide insights and recommendations that highlight opportunities and risks to their enterprises. Wikistrat excels as both a “stand alone” capability or as a complement and source of “alternative thinking” for enterprises with internal research departments.”
Steven Cambone, Former Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence (USDI)
“Wikistrat offers an extraordinary open source platform with access to vetted expertise that can address vexing yet strategic issues of our times for a wide array of clients. The access afforded by Wikistrat to that expertise and its innovative use of crowd sourcing and big data enables the client to tailor the requirements to fit his/her needs and thus avoid obtaining analysis that has little applicability to what the client is looking for to inform significant government or corporate decisions.”
David R. Shedd, Former Senior CIA Executive and Former Acting Director, Defense Intelligence Agency
“One of the strengths that we see for this crowdsourced approach is the amount of eyes assembled to look at an issue in a short amount of time. For this reason, huge amounts of information can be processed and synthesized much faster than with linear models.”
Tim Haffner, U.S. Africa Command, U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
“Wikistrat’s delivery was two standard deviations above the norm and far exceeded expectation. That level of performance is rare. The data and information was rich and useful, but it was the speed that blew me away – we found it hard to keep up.”
Dick Bedford, Deputy DCOS SPP, NATO, Allied Command Transformation (ACT)
Wikistrat in the Media
Wikistrat in the Media
“These Four Growing Risks Threaten Global Stability“
— Observer, January 11, 2017
Here is a quartet of the most pressing global risks to stability this year, derived from a joint project with NYU MA International Relations and the geopolitical crowdsourced consultancy Wikistrat.
“Wikistrat berät mit der Crowd“
— Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, November 21, 2016
On its online platform, Wikistrat analyzes themes that are as diverse as its analysts: from smuggling in the Sahel to the digitization of health care.
“Opting in: Using IoT connectivity to drive differentiation“
— Deloitte University Press, June 2, 2016
To better understand potential IoT applications in insurance, the Deloitte Center for Financial Services, in conjunction with Wikistrat, performed a crowdsourcing simulation to explore the technology’s implications for the future of the financial services industry.
“Banking on the IOT. Is it possible to combine the two?“
— Big Data Made Simple, June 1, 2016
According to a report by consulting firm Wikistrat, the financial services industry is starting to utilize the IoT in some intriguing ways. Insurance companies, for example, can use IoT to gauge someone’s driving habits and then charge them accordingly for auto insurance.
“7 Predictions for the Consulting Industry in 2016“
— LexisNexis, May 24, 2016
Wikistrat [operates] a global network of more than 2,000 subject-matter experts working collaboratively via an online platform to help decision-makers identify solutions to complex strategic challenges.
“Why the Middle East Is Still a Mess a Century After the Sykes-Picot Agreement“
— Slate, May 19, 2016
Jeffrey Itell, senior analyst for Wikistrat, a geostrategic consultants group, suspects [an enduring peace in the Middle East] may require a revival of big-power politics, in which the region’s main powers impose a peace by carving their own spheres of influence in the area.
“ISIS in Libya“
— The Hill, April 25, 2016
ISIS is taking advantage of the lack of central government, moving elsewhere after battlefield losses in Iraq and Syria and adopting a nationalist narrative since western attempts to stabilize Libya are increasingly seen negatively, according to [Wikistrat’s] report.
“Digital Diplomacy 2.0: Beyond the Social Media Obsession“
— CPD Blog, April 25, 2016
The crowdsourced consultancy Wikistrat already uses a global network of experts to enhance its analytical power. Cash-strapped foreign ministries can do the same.
“Smart buildings: How IoT technology aims to add value for real estate companies“
— Deloitte University Press, April 19, 2016
In a crowdsourced simulation exercise conducted by Wikistrat on behalf of the Deloitte Center for Financial Services, one of the scenarios suggested that CRE valuations can factor granular and secure information about which buildings contribute to tenants’ employee productivity.
“What the Sharing Economy Means for Consultants“
— InfoDesk, March 31, 2016
Wikistrat experts from all over the world collaborate in order to answer client questions. The firm made headlines in 2014 when their analysts predicted the rise of a Crimean separatist movement which would seek Russian annexation.
“Mission accomplished in Syria? Sort of, Mr Putin“
— The Telegraph, March 15, 2016
A recent war game run by Wikistrat … confirms many [Russian] fears about a second Afghanistan. Analysts found that as Russia rushed to respond to unforeseen circumstances in Syria, “greater battle field options led to Phyrric victories, such that withdrawal makes sense.”
“Let’s Get Virtual“
— The Huffington Post, January 19, 2016
Today, even entrepreneurs and subject-matter experts are using the power of the virtual organization because it allows them to be both small and large at the same time.
“Asia-Pacific Report: China has challenges ahead to make economy more efficient“
— The Vancouver Sun, January 4, 2016
In an analysis published by crowdsourcing consultancy Wikistrat, Hugh Stephens argues that Beijing’s economic challenges will likely mean further structural reforms in the way it attracts investment, as well as dealing with the performance of state-owned enterprises.
“China’s European Century: A Wikistrat crowdsourced simulation“
— The Diplomat, December 24, 2015
In an online, crowdsourced analytic exercise, Wikistrat’s experts recently predicted that the coming years will see a deepening of this China-Europe interdependence.
“2016 Predictions: ISIS in America to Incite an American Civil War Using Anger of Muslims to Divide the U.S.“
— Inquisitr, December 22, 2015
In the West, a wave of attacks will be designed to tear apart the social fabric of societies and polarize inter-community relations (i.e., Muslims vs. non-Muslims) up to the point of fomenting civil war.
“Banking on the IoT in Financial Services“
— CMS Wire, November 23, 2015
Research conducted by the crowdsourcing consulting firm Wikistrat and published by Deloitte Financial Services was based on a virtual meeting of the minds of academics, analysts and entrepreneurs with tech and financial services backgrounds.
“Younger Workers More Mobile, Agile, Report Says“
— FEDweek, November 19, 2015
The life experiences and lifestyle preferences of the Millennial Generation will have a major impact on working places within 10 years, a Wikistrat report has said, with most workplaces likely to have “far fewer workers concentrated in the same physical space.”
“How Professional Services Can Disrupt Its Way Out of Automation“
— Wharton, University of Pennsylvania, November 5, 2015
To meet the multi-faceted challenges of disruption to clients firms must forge more alliances that reach beyond traditional segments. Wikistrat has brought an entirely different approach to solving clients’ problems: It crowdsources solutions through an online global network.
“The derivative effect: How financial services can make IoT technology pay off“
— Deloitte Center for Financial Services, October 13, 2015
The sheer number of ideas [Wikistrat’s] workshop generated in a short period suggests that opportunities to capitalize on new information flows may be limited only by our collective imagination.
“Wikistrat Brings Crowdsourcing to Geopolitical Consulting“
— Government Technology, August 24, 2015
By drawing on an extensive and far-flung network of experts, Wikistrat promises its clients to rapidly build a trove of data its competition can’t match.
“Crowd Sees Cyberwar Coming“
— Politico, August 13, 2015
It will take a military conflict, in which a cyberattack provokes a kinetic response from a nation-state, before global players get serious about setting the limits of acceptable behavior in cyberspace, according to crowdsourced security consultants Wikistrat.
“Wikistrat wants to be your crowd-sourced war nerd“
— Pando, August 7, 2015
Wikistrat’s Regime Stability Model provides the company’s clients with continuous monitoring of the viability of any given country’s current government.
“The Case for Crowdsourcing War games“
— Nextgov, July 14, 2015
One Washington-based consulting firm, whose clients include the Pentagon, is betting on the wisdom of the crowd. For the past few years, Wikistrat has drawn upon a network of about 2,000 analysts, posing questions about potential international trends and crises.
“Wikistrat is capitalizing on far-flung and diverse analysts“
— The Washington Times, June 17, 2015
The Wikistrat network employs an online Wikipedia-style software program for its analyses of global hot spots. It then produced in-depth intelligence reports for its clients in three weeks or less.
“With Wikistrat, crowdsourcing gets geopolitical“
— Financial Times, September 3, 2014
While some intelligence agencies have experimented with crowdsourcing to gain insights from the general public, Wikistrat uses a “closed crowd” of subject experts and bills itself as the world’s first crowdsourced analytical services consultancy.
“Crowdsourcing: The Future Of Consulting?“
— InformationWeek, June 18, 2014
Wikistrat’s eclectic community of analysts beat the CIA by predicting Russia’s annexation of Crimea. Should crowdsourcing play a bigger role in the consulting industry?
“After Crimea: Top Intelligence Analysts Forecast The 5 Things That Putin Might Do Next“
— Business Insider, March 21, 2014
In January, Wikistrat analysts forecast the potential for Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych to resign (which he did a month later) and for Crimea to request annexation into Russia (which occurred this week).
“Wikistrat Briefs Alternative Futures to AFRICOM Staff“
— U.S. AFRICOM Public Affairs, February 5, 2014
This simulation provided unique insight that will assist us in developing effective multi-year security cooperation engagement strategies with African partners in the Trans-Sahel region.
“Why This Company Is Crowdsourcing, Gamifying the World’s Most Difficult Problems“
— Fast Company, December 6, 2013
One consulting house, Wikistrat, is upending the model: Instead of using a stable of in-house analysts, the company crowdsources content and pays the crowd for its time.
“Intelligence agencies turn to crowdsourcing“
— BBC, October 10, 2012
The idea of crowdsourcing geopolitical forecasting is increasing in popularity and not just for spies. Wikistrat is using crowdsourcing to generate scenarios about future geopolitical events.
“Russia, Greece, and the EU: A Putin-Shaped Shark in the Mediterranean?“
— War on the Rocks, July 16, 2015
With a team of its Russia analysts, Wikistrat […] looked at what strategic interest Russia has in Greece and whether a bailout — or similar “strings attached” financial support — might be something the Russians could plausibly offer to Greece.
“Only Shock Events Could Trigger Pakistan’s Fourth Military Coup“
— The World Post, April 14, 2015
According to Wikistrat’s latest crowdsourced analysis, a military coup is unlikely to take place in Pakistan before the 2018 election when Prime Minister Sharif’s term expires.
“Wikistrat: Eighty Possible Scenarios for Every International Crisis“
— ABC, August 8, 2015
The method of crowdsourcing not only enriches the product that is offered to client, it also brings together the right people from around the world and from different backgrounds to enrich the simulation.
“A Silver Lining for the Ebola Crisis?“
— The Huffington Post, October 21, 2014
Over 60 analysts worldwide explored a range of outcomes from regional containment to global pandemic. Their key conclusion? The spread of infectious diseases such as Ebola demands a new response paradigm that is less passive and more proactive.
“Iraq’s Sunnis Likely to Fall Out Once ISIS Campaign Runs Its Course“
— Atlantic Sentinel, June 26, 2014
The geostrategic consultancy firm Wikistrat predicts that “ISIS will find it a challenge to govern a landlocked ‘Mesopotamian Caliphate’ while facing Shia enemies on its eastern and western flanks.”
“Why ‘exoatmospheric war zone’ is part of the outlook for space companies“
— Quartz, May 13, 2014
Wikistrat’s analysis finds that governments will invest more in the private space industry in a high-tension scenario than in one where international relationships don’t drive prestigious scientific missions and military spending, leaving the companies struggling for returns.
“What will we smuggle in the future? Drones, coal, and honeybees“
— The Washington Post, December 26, 2012
Everybody’s making predictions for 2013 right now, but why not aim farther? Recently, the consultancy group Wikistrat ran a large crowdsourced simulation to try to figure out what sorts of items would be smuggled in 2050.
“New global sources of demand“
— CNN, April 6, 2012
What can America anticipate when it comes to new sources of demand in the global economy? What are some of the hot goods and services of the coming years? We asked Wikistrat’s global community of strategists for some ideas and here’s what they chose to highlight.
“As China rises, ‘grand strategy’ talk back in style“
— Reuters, May 12, 2011
“I really think it’s caught the spirit of the moment,” says Wikistrat CEO Joel Zamel. “There is much more interest in a kind of ‘grand strategy’ approach.
The company greatly benefits from an Advisory Council of highly experienced former government officials and industry professionals. Acting in both formal and informal capacities, members of the council provide strategic advice to the company’s leadership and serve as advocates for the company.
Mr. David Shedd
Former Acting Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency
Mr. Shedd is a retired U.S. intelligence officer whose final post was as the Acting Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. From 2007 to 2010, he served as the Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Policy, Plans and Requirements, where he oversaw the formulation and implementation of major Intelligence Community policies from information sharing and IC authorities to analytic standards. In particular, he led the review of Executive Order 12333, the foundational U.S. intelligence policy, which was revised by President George W. Bush in July 2008.
Mr. Shedd also developed and implemented a National Intelligence Strategy, published in August 2009 for the IC and led strategic planning efforts to determine intelligence priorities for the IC and the nation.
General (ret.) Michael V. Hayden
Former Director, National Security Agency
Former Director, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
General Hayden is a retired United States Air Force four-star general and former Director of the National Security Agency, former Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence and former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency. He currently co-chairs the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Electric Grid Cyber Security Initiative.
General (ret.) James L. Jones
Former National Security Advisor, Former Commandant of the US Marine Corps
James L. Jones is a retired United States Marine Corps general and the former United States National Security Advisor.
During his military career, he served as Commander, United States European Command (COMUSEUCOM) and Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR) from 2003 to 2006 and as the 32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps from 1999 to 2003. Jones retired from the Marine Corps in 2007 after 40 years of service.
After retiring from the Marine Corps, General Jones remained involved in national security and foreign policy issues. In 2007, he served as chairman of the Congressional Independent Commission on the Security Forces of Iraq, which investigated the capabilities of the Iraqi police and armed forces. In November 2007, he was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of State as special envoy for Middle East security. He served as chairman of the Atlantic Council from 2007 to 2009, when he assumed the post of President Barack Obama’s National Security Advisor.
Ambassador Dennis Ross
Former United States Ambassador
Ambassador Ross played the leading role in shaping U.S. involvement in the Middle East peace process for more than 12 years, serving in the Bill Clinton and George H.W. Bush Administrations. As a peace process architect, he assisted the Israelis and Palestinians in reaching the 1995 Interim Agreement, and he successfully brokered the Hebron Accord.
Ambassador Ross facilitated the Israeli-Jordan peace treaty and worked intensively to bring Israel and Syria together. His tireless approach centered on making progress wherever it was possible, while building new baselines for understanding. He was awarded the Presidential Medal for Distinguished Federal Civilian Service by President Clinton.
He is currently a Counselor and Ziegler Distinguished Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
Mr. Elliott Abrams
Former Deputy Director of National Security Council
Mr. Elliott Abrams is a former American diplomat, lawyer and political scientist who served in foreign policy positions for U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush.
Mr. Abrams is currently a Senior Fellow for Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. Additionally, he holds positions on the Committee for Peace and Security in the Gulf (CPSG), Center for Security Policy and National Secretary Advisory Council, Committee for a Free Lebanon and the Project for the New American Century. He is also a member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council and teaches foreign policy at Georgetown University.
Mr. John P. Hannah
Former National Security Advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney
Senior Counselor at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies
John Hannah served as one of Vice President Dick Cheney’s most trusted aides on national security issues. During President George W. Bush’s first time, he was the Vice President’s Deputy National Security Advisor for the Middle East, where he was intimately involved in U.S. policy for Iraq, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and the global war on terrorism. In President Bush’s second term, Mr. Hannah was elevated to the role of Vice President Cheney’s National Security Advisor.
Out of government, Mr. Hannah has served as Deputy Director and Senior Fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. He has also practiced law, specializing in international dispute resolution.
Mr. Hannah is currently president of Global Futures LLC, a consulting firm that assists international clients in the areas of geopolitical risk mitigation, government relations and investment/trade promotion.
Ms. Sandra Charles
Founder of C&O Resources
Ms. Charles has over 16 years of government experience in foreign policy and national security, serving as a member of the National Security Council staff in the White House and the Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. She has expertise in Middle Eastern, South Asian and African issues and programs related to U.S. national security and foreign policy goals and objectives. She has participated in high-level negotiations and policy development on security cooperation, international agreements, foreign military sales, peace initiatives and crisis management, including the first Bush Administration’s policy for Operation Desert Storm.
Mr. Steve Cambone
Former Undersecretary of Defense Intelligence (USDI), Department of Defense
Mr. Steve Cambone the first United States Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, a post created in March 2003.
Previously, Mr. Cambone was the Staff Director for the Commission to Assess United States National Security Space Management and Organization from 2000 to 2001. He was the Director of Research at the Institute for National Strategic Studies, National Defense University from 1998 to 2000. Before that, he was the Staff Director for the Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States; a Senior Fellow in Political-Military Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies; the Director for Strategic Defense Policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense; and the Deputy Director, Strategic Analysis, SRS Technologies (Washington Operations).
Mr. Jerry J. Brennan
Founder of Security Management Resources
Mr. Brennan is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive for the Security Management Resources Group of Companies (SMR Group). He is a respected veteran of international big business and has brought a wealth of executive security leadership to the SMR offering.
Prior to SMR, Mr. Brennan enjoyed a 26-year career in domestic and international enterprise risk and security leadership roles for Mobil Oil Corporation, Chicago Board Options Exchange and Panduit Corp. and was a Resident Advisor to the Director General of the Royal Commission in Jubail, Saudi Arabia.
Before transitioning to the private sector, he spent several years in Europe working with various international authorities and served with the U.S. Marine Corps.