Dr David Strachan-Morris, SFHEA, MSecII

Lecturer in Intelligence and SecurityDr David Strachan-Morris

BA (Wolverhampton), PG Cert (De Montfort), PhD (Wolverhampton)

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BA, PG Cert, PhD

Before joining the department I had extensive operational experience in the police, army, and commercial security sector. I studied at the University of Wolverhampton for my BA (Hons) in War Studies with Politics and my PhD on 'The Origins and Implementation of the US Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Strategy in Vietnam, March 1965 to November 1968'. I hold a Senior Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy and I am a Member of the Security Institute of Ireland.


I am the course leader for the MA DL Intelligence and Security. I convene and teach the following modules:

PL7540: Intelligence: Key Questions and Debates

PL7541: Intelligence Tradecraft and Techniques

PL7542: Intelligence Failure

PL7543: Intelligence Ethics



  • Spreading Ink Blots from Da Nang to the DMZ: The US Marine Corps Counterinsurgency Strategy in Vietnam 1965 – 1968, (Warwick: Helion and Company, 2020).


  • 'Developing Theory on the Use of Intelligence by Non-State Actors: Five Case Studies on Insurgent Intelligence', Introduction to Special Section of Intelligence and National Security, Vol 34, No 7, Dec 2019, pp 980-984.
  • 'The Use of Intelligence by Insurgent Groups: The North Vietnamese in the Second Indochina War as a Case Study', Intelligence and National Security, Vol 34, No 7, Dec 2019, pp 985-998.
  • 'The Who, What, Why, and How of Teaching Intelligence: The Leicester Approach', with Helen Dexter and Mark Phythian, Intelligence and National Security, Vol 32, No 7, Dec 2017, pp 920-934.
  • ‘Threat and Risk: What is the Difference and Why Does it Matter?’, Intelligence and National Security, Vol 27, No 2, April 2012, pp 172-186.
  • ‘Leadership Decapitation: Al Qa’ida in Iraq as a Case Study’, RUSI Journal, Vol 155, No 4, Aug/Sep 2010, pp 32-26.
  • ‘Hostile Environments: The New Frontiers’, (with William Freear), Intersec – The Journal of International Security, Jan 2010, pp 34-36.
  • The Future of Civil-Military Intelligence Co-operation Based on Lessons Learned in Iraq’, Intelligence and National Security, Vol 24, No 2, April 2009, pp 257-254.

Book chapters

  • Controlling the Corporate Warrior in Iraq, in Gary Schaub (ed), Private Military and Security Contractors: Controlling the Corporate Warrior (New York: Roman and Littlefield, 2016).
  • ‘From the Banana Wars to the Three Block War: Warrior Scholars in the US Marine Corps’, in Mumford and Reis (eds), Warrior Scholars in Counterinsurgency (Abingdon,Routledge, 2013), pp 70-83.
  • ‘The Intelligence Cycle in the Corporate World: Bespoke or Off the Shelf’, in Mark Phythian (ed), Understanding the Intelligence Cycle, Routledge, (Abingdon, Routledge, 2013), pp 119-133.
  • ‘Iraq’, in Farson et al (eds), PSI Handbook of Global Intelligence and Security: National Approaches, (Westport, CT, Praeger Security International, 2008), pp 551-569.


  • Huw Bennett 'Fighting the Mau Mau: The British Army and Counterinsurgency in the Kenya Emergency', Journal of Military History, Vol 77, No 4, October 2013, pp 1533-1534.


Before joining the department I worked as a political and security risk analyst in the private sector and served in the British Army, so my academic research interests largely reflect my previous background and experience. My primary research interest is intelligence, concentrating on issues of risk and uncertainty, looking at how intelligence agencies – in the public and private sectors – can best support decision makers in complex environments. My secondary research interest is counterinsurgency, looking at its continued utility as an operational level tool to enable a military force to achieve a specific aim in a specific area. Finally I also have a special interest in private security companies and their role.

PhD Supervision

I am interested in supervising students looking to research intelligence, counterinsurgency and private security companies.


International Association for Intelligence Education - Vice Chair (International)

International Association for Intelligence Education, Europe Chapter - Board Member

International Studies Association - Member

British International Studies Association - Member

Political Studies Association - Member

I am the Social Media Editor of the Journal Intelligence and National Security (Follow the journal on Twitter - @IntelNatSecJnl)

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School of Politics and International Relations

University of Leicester
University Road
Leicester, LE1 7RH
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)116 252 2702
Email: HyPIR@le.ac.uk


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