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By on 16 Mar, 2013 | From the channel/s: Diplomacy

It is fascinating to see how Russia entered the heart of Europe as a consequence of the Napoleonic defeat, was thrown out again after the Revoluation and the end of World War I, came back in as a consequence of German defeat in World War II, and threw themselves out again after the downfall of communism.

By on 24 Feb, 2013 | From the channel/s: E-Diplomacy

This blog was inspired by lively debate during the February advanced diplomatic webinar on the evolution of technology and diplomacy. We discussed the impact of technology on the way we think and formulate ideas. In the latest evolution from typewriters to computers, we gained flexibility in editing text and lost the discipline of formulating ideas into text.

By on 20 Feb, 2013 | From the channel/s: E-Diplomacy

Two developments last week triggered the following reflection.

First, I decided to go for a half-holiday. I decided to spend half of my day with my daughter and her cousin skiing at the local ski centre outside Geneva and to spend the rest of the day working online.  In the morning, we would make the half-hour drive to the ski centre and return in the afternoon when I would take the other – working – part of my ‘holiday’. The plan worked very well on Monday. Half and half.

By on 21 Dec, 2012 | From the channel/s: Diplomacy

'We cannot afford to get wise slowly' was the answer from one junior diplomat to my question about how young diplomats, attending last week's Seminar on 'Excellence in Diplomacy' in Belgrade, demonstrated so much wisdom. Wisdom is usually associated with age and experience.

By on 19 Dec, 2012 | From the channel/s: E-Diplomacy

‘The higher the budget often the lower the impact of e-diplomacy projects,’ was the first counter-intuitive insight by Ambassador Alexandre Fasel, Swiss Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva (delivered at the Geneva e-diplomacy day).

By on 22 Nov, 2012 | From the channel/s: E-Diplomacy

One of the questions I was asked at the recent conference on Innovation in Diplomacy was why we chose to involve so many senior participants (a few of them have seen seventy winters).  The main reason was to address two increasingly important biases which can hamper innovation and creativity:

By on 21 Nov, 2012 | From the channel/s: E-Diplomacy

Close to 100 diplomats and academics had a vibrant and engaging discussion at the Geneva E-diplomacy Day.  One of the outcomes was the drafting of e-diplomacy principles (which the session participants dubbed ‘e-diplomacy laws’). Ambassador Alexandre Fasel, Swiss permanent representative of the UN, summarised his experience of e-diplomacy in the first four principles:

By on 07 Nov, 2012 | From the channel/s: Diplo Blog

Have you ever had a problem reading a person’s name from their conference badge? You can usually find about the name of the conference, although you already know what conference you are attending. You can find the name of the venue,  although you should already know where you are. You can find the dates, although again, you should know what these dates are. Yet the three most important pieces information – name, organisation, country – are very often lost in this mix.

By on 15 Oct, 2012 | From the channel/s: Diplomacy

The Nobel Prize announcement has triggered another round of EU bashing. There are many reasons today to be critical of the EU. Any positive appraisal of the EU project could be seen counter-intuitive. Keeping this mind, I would like to argue that the decision of the Nobel Prize committee is not only justified but also visionary.

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