About

About Us

Wikistrat: The world’s first crowdsourced consultancy

Wikistrat operates a global network of over 2,000 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

Vision

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.

Mission

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.

What is Crowdsourced Consulting?

Why crowdsourcing?

Crowdsourcing is an efficient, creative and rapid way of obtaining a wide range of different perspectives for any given set of issues. Ideas, insights and understandings are produced and captured in real time as dozens or even hundreds of strategic thinkers chase down a problem, analyze market conditions or evaluate strategic alternatives. By tailoring a given project’s parameters and participants, providing analytic organizing principles, and managing a technological platform to facilitate interaction among large numbers of participants, Wikistrat delivers to its clients the “wisdom of the (expert) crowd.”

In today’s complicated world, businesses and governments need broad intellectual exposure to sift through increasingly complex issues and generate greater analytic insight. Wikistrat achieves this by pulling hundreds of experts into an online venue specifically designed to foster “collaborative competition” – and then turbo-charging the dynamic by concentrating and focusing the effort to an unprecedented degree. Our proprietary “Collaborative Competition”™ methodology (patent pending) allows Wikistrat to harness large, invitation-only crowds of experts and have them collaborate and compete in small teams – generating hundreds of potential scenarios, policy options, strategies and insights.

As the future of consulting, this approach already is changing the way in which corporations and governments consume analysis and conduct their strategic planning.

Crowdsourcing is not a universal replacement for in-house studies and traditional forms of consulting (yes, we offer those too!), and there are times when traditional analyses are more efficient and adequate for the task. Moreover, you simply can’t outsource your strategic thought processes every time.

But when the time comes to tap into wider pools of thinking, explore issues more “horizontally” than “vertically,” or look at the widest range of issues impacting a market, crowdsourcing is fast, efficient and capable. In today’s black-swan world, you can never ask too many “what if” questions, or have too many bright minds proposing possible answers.

Corporate Information

Code of Ethics

  1. As a U.S.-based company incorporated in the state of Delaware, Wikistrat will comply with all Delaware State and United States Federal laws and regulations governing our business.
  2. Wikistrat reserves the right to refuse a project on the grounds that the results might be used for a possible violation of international laws.
  3. Wikistrat will not perform services nor receive remuneration from any individuals or organizations that have been sanctioned by the international community, or whose goals and objectives run counter to Wikistrat’s global worldview as described in our mission statement.
  4. Wikistrat requires that any entity using Wikistrat’s services must declare if they are working on behalf of another client or entity to ensure that Wikistrat does not violate the rules as outlined above.
  5. Employees and consultants of Wikistrat are expected to use their best judgment to act, at all times and in all ways, in the best interests of Wikistrat and our clientele, and comply with Wikistrat’s membership agreements, Terms of Service and Analyst Code of Conduct.
  6. Wikistrat’s employees and consultants are legally committed to use only unclassified, legally shareable content in all client projects.
  7. Employees of Wikistrat may not bribe anyone for any reason, whether in dealings with governments or the private sector.
  8. Wikistrat will not work with or for any entity under financial sanction, determined by the following:
    • Her Majesty Treasury List
    • Bureau of Industry and Security
    • Department of State
    • EU Terrorism List
    • FBI Top Ten Most Wanted
    • Interpol Most Wanted
    • ICE List (U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement)
    • Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Sanctions
    • CBI List (The Central Bureau of Investigation)
    • SDN & Blocked Entities
    • SECO List
    • Treasury PML List
    • UN Consolidated List
    • OCC Shell Bank List
    • World Bank Debarred Parties List
  9. It is in the interest of Wikistrat and our clientele to draw expertise from all corners of the globe and from diverse facets of society to maximize the range of analytic perspectives we provide. In the course of obtaining these perspectives, it is our priority to ensure to the greatest extent possible that individual contributors have the required academic and professional pedigrees and cultural acumen to support Wikistrat’s work. Those who violate our corporate standards will be prohibited from contributing to future engagements with the company and removed from the Wikistrat Analytic Community.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the organizational structure of Wikistrat?
Wikistrat Inc., a privately-held company, is incorporated in the U.S. State of Delaware, and is a for-profit corporation unaffiliated with any government.

Are there limitations for who Wikistrat will and will not do work for?
Wikistrat’s corporate ethics policy, mission statement, code of ethics and company values can all be found on this website. Wikistrat operates an Advisory Board of former senior government officials and operates a governance structure that practices a corporate ethics policy grounded in integrity and transparency.

Where was Wikistrat founded?
Wikistrat was founded in Sydney, Australia, in 2009.

Where is Wikistrat?
Wikistrat’s headquarters are based in Washington DC, although it operates R&D centers in Tel-Aviv and Sydney, Australia.

Who are Wikistrat’s analysts?
Wikistrat’s Analytic Community is extensive in number (2000+) and diverse in nature. They come from various backgrounds, areas of expertise and disciplines. Wikistrat staff makes an ongoing and concerted effort to diversify the Analytic Community in terms of geographic location, worldview, area of expertise and career experience in order to maximize the number of perspectives available to our clients. We welcome and encourage participation from analysts in all countries (where in accordance with all relevant legal rule sets). Wikistrat’s diverse network of analysts have no organized political agenda. All members of the Wikistrat Analytic Community have been vetted and trained on the Wikistrat platform and have legally committed to abiding by Wikistrat’s Analytic Community confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements, as well as Wikistrat’s code of conduct.

How are Wikistrat analysts remunerated?
Wikistrat provides a combination of a guaranteed fixed fees per project and potential access to additional monetary prizes for analysts participating in the lead team of all client projects. The larger the client project, the more the available funds for the analytic team according to an algorithm consistent across client projects.

Is there a difference between analysts and employees?
There is an important difference between Wikistrat company employees and members of the Wikistrat Analytic Community. Analysts of the community enjoy access to client and internal projects, and have the opportunity to learn, network, develop their analytic skills and profit from their analysis. Wikistrat’s staff is composed of project managers, data scientists, programmers and methodology designers who oversee and facilitating the crowdsourced activities.

Who has access to content produced by Wikistrat’s analytic community?
Wikistrat’s Analytic Community and clients are bound by confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements limiting the use and reproduction of content produced on the Wikistrat platform for clients. Client studies and projects’ content is only accessible for a limited time by invited contributors.

Staff

Staff

Joel Zamel, CEO

Joel is the Founding Director and CEO of Wikistrat. Joel has a Bachelor of Mining Engineering from the University of New South Wales and a Master’s degree in Government, Diplomacy and Strategy from the Interdisciplinary Center, specializing in Counter-Terrorism and Homeland Security. Joel also developed the strategic planning methodology of Collaborative-Competition™ on which Wikistrat’s flagship system is based.


Daniel Green, CTO

Daniel has a Bachelor’s degree in Technology from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology with additional tertiary studies in Security and Counter-Terrorism from Monash University and Murdoch University. A co-founder of Wikistrat with Joel Zamel, Daniel has had a diverse career spanning the use of technology in a range of environments and has completed engagements for Macquarie Bank, Opera Australia, University of Sydney Union and a private security agency. Having had the privilege of access to both computers and the Internet from a young age, Daniel is quick to adapt to changes in a technical environment and uses this to keep Wikistrat innovative.


Elad Schaffer, COO

Elad is a former senior analyst specialized in the field of Counter-Terrorism. He previously held Vice President position at CeifiT consulting firm, heading the Research Department and the firm’s Marketing operations. In addition, Elad has been involved in business consulting and the development of new entrepreneurships. He holds Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) degrees. Elad oversees the growth and operation of Wikistrat’s Analytic Community.


Dr. Shay Hershkovitz, Director, Analytic Community

Shay has vast experience in the field of intelligence in general and political analysis of the Middle East in particular. He has a PhD in Political Science and lectures at several colleges and universities, specializing in political theory, consumer culture, globalization and social protest.

Before joining Wikistrat, Shay worked in strategic consulting and market research, specializing in competitive intelligence analysis and business war-games. He was involved in long-term strategic planning and executing and assisted leading companies in achieving commutative advantages in their various markets and verticals.


Dr. Thomas P.M. Barnett, Chief Analyst

Dr. Barnett, a world-leading grand strategist, is the author of five books and a New York Times bestseller. He has served in various leadership positions in the consulting world in the past two decades, including positions as Senior Managing Director at Enterra Solutions, Partner at IEG Strategies, Assistant for Strategic Futures, Office of Force Transformation (OFT), Office of the Secretary of Defense. Dr. Barnett is also former Senior Advisor to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Joint Staff, Central Command, Special Operations Command and Joint Forces Command. In the past few years, Barnett has been authoring the successful “Globlogization” blog. He joined forces with Wikistrat in 2010 to establish a unique strategic consulting service offering.


Ted Obenchain, Director, Business Development

A Director of Business Development, Ted is responsible for orchestrating Wikistrat’s business origination efforts across the public and private sectors. Prior to joining Wikistrat, he was the director of the government services business at Eurasia Group Ltd., a global geopolitical risk consultancy. He has also worked in senior business development and analytical roles at Science Applications International Corporation, a Fortune 500 international defense company, and The Cohen Group, a strategic advisory firm founded by former U.S. Defense Secretary William Cohen. Ted holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs and International Economics from The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.


Advisory Board

General James L. Jones

General James L. Jones

Former National Security Advisor to the President of the United States
Former Supreme Allied Commander Europe and Combatant Commander USEUCOM
32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps

General James L. Jones has spent his life serving and protecting America and American ideals. He is sought after for his wisdom, guidance and political endorsement. As the former commander of U.S. European Command and Supreme Allied Commander Europe, he led all military operations for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and later, as National Security Advisor, he brought clear vision and steady leadership to America’s mission in Iraq, the war in Afghanistan’ and the country’s interests around the world.


Greg Lebedev

Greg Lebedev

Chairman, Center for International Private Enterprise
Board Member, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Senior Advisor, The Robertson Foundation

Mr. Lebedev currently holds a portfolio of assignments which span the business, government and philanthropic sectors. He serves as Chairman of the publicly-funded Center for International Private Enterprise, one of the four core institutes of the National Endowment for Democracy, whose mission is to promote free market institutions in emerging economies throughout the world. He is a Senior Advisor to the President and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the largest business federation in the world. And he is Senior Advisor to the Robertson Foundation for Government, a private family fund which provides support to talented men and women wishing to pursue governmental careers in national security and international affairs. Mr. Lebedev sits on a number of advisory boards, regularly speaks on a range of international subjects, and undertakes special projects involving trade, development and global corporate governance.

Wikistrat in the Media

Wikistrat in the Media

Financial Times

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.


InformationWeek

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?


U.S. Africa Command

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.


Fast Company

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.


Business Insider

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).


The Huffington Post logo

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, as well as the potential for both negative and positive results. Their key conclusion? The spread of infectious diseases such as Ebola demands a new response paradigm that is less passive and more proactive.


Reuters

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 World Post

Can ISIS Really Pose a Threat to Jordan?
The World Post, July 28, 2014

Wikistrat evaluated four possible scenarios to reveal how the Islamic State might attempt to infiltrate Jordan in the coming months. None of these seem especially threatening for Jordan, though the country remains under significant burden.


The Washington Post

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.


CNN

What comes after Chavez?
— CNN, February 10, 2012

Chavez built his dictatorship the old-fashioned way: by destroying all the political institutions that would naturally validate a legitimate successor. Thus, we’d expect a nasty internal power struggle would invariably ensue.


The World Post

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.


Quartz

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.


BBC

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.


Atlantic Sentinel logo

Iraq’s Sunnis Likely to Fall Out Once ISIS Campaign Runs Its Course
Atlantic Sentinel, June 26, 2014

The geostrategic consultancy firm Wikistrat similarly predicts that “ISIS will find it a challenge to govern a landlocked ‘Mesopotamian Caliphate’ while facing Shia enemies on its eastern and western flanks.”


CNN

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.