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KINT 5080 - Diplomacy in Practice

Type d'enseignement : Seminar

Semester : Spring 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English



Course Description

A unique oppportunity to learn with two senior diplomatic practitioners to explore the changing role of the diplomat and of diplomacy in the 21st Century. The emphasis will be on practice and experience rather than theory. We will cover both the view from the field and the role at the centre. We hope to illustrate the range of challenges and the stimulus of variety along with some mundane realities.

Session One:
The Profession of Diplomacy: What do Diplomats do? What has changed in four decades? What has remained the same? Personal qualities. Skills and knowledge. Managing people and information. Access and influence. Qualifications and training. Leadership. The need for diverse thinking.

Session Two:
Making and Delivering Foreign Policy: The role of the Foreign Ministry in government. How is policy made? The role of the Embassy and the diplomat in the field. What is the added value of an Ambassador? Implementation of policy. Multilateral and Bilateral diplomacy.

Session Three:
Running a Foreign Ministry and Running an Embassy: How is a Foreign Ministry organized? Working with politicians. Finance and personnel management. How is an Embassy organized? Security, outreach, relations with home.

Session Four:
Public Diplomacy: How public should diplomacy be? The impact of social media. How Diplomats deal with the media. The shrinking of the world. Strategic communications. Networks. Campaigning. Working with external multipliers.

Session Five:
Economic Diplomacy: Promoting prosperity and economic goals. National economic interests and the multilateral economic system. Trade and Investment Promotion.

Session Six:
Crisis Management: the role of Diplomats in managing conflict and crisis at the centre of government and in the field. Case studies from our experience. Consular work and protection of citizens.


  • DRULAK, Petr
  • PRENTICE, Christopher (Formerly Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

Pedagogical format

This course is taught by to former ambassadors. Each of them will teach 6 hours. The course is built on their experiences as ambassadors, one ambassador will focus more on on the role at the centre and the other one on the role abroad. Lectures mixed with plenary Q and A, small group discussions and exercises and some individual short presentations

Course validation

Two written exercices:
- a 4-5 page policy submission based on a fictional scenario, to be written at home drawing on the material explored during the sessions; timing probably after the first six sessions; 50%
- a 4-5 page essay, to be written at home, on a broad theme drawn from the material explored during the sessions; 50%


Some informal preparation at home for either short oral presentations or group work in future sessions. See also the suggestions for reading. No more that one hour each week

Required reading

Track key diplomatic issues in serious newspapers, periodicals and social media – as preparation for active participation in the sessions; and to raise issues of particular interest, so helping to shape the

Additional required reading

Satow's Diplomatic Practice 2017