Explore the origins of multilateral diplomacy and its evolution within a dynamic and rapidly changing environment.
This course introduces participants to the diplomatic interaction among more than two actors, with particular emphasis on the multilateral diplomacy represented by the United Nations system. Participants examine an overview of all protagonists and their roles, as well as the complex framework, intricate rules, and methods of multilateral diplomacy. These challenging topics are complemented by insights into the processes leading to the adoption of documents by states within international organisations, as well the current transformations affecting the multilateral system. Using illustrative case studies, the course blends an academic perspective with the experience of current practitioners of multilateral diplomacy.
MOST POPULAR COURSES:
Open for applications:
Credit: 18 May 2020; Certificate: 15 June 2020
20 July 2020
Certificate: €690; Credit: €850; Scholarships available
Amb. Amr Aljowaily is Egypt’s Ambassador to Serbia. He is also visiting faculty at UNITAR’s Multilateral Diplomacy Program, adjunct faculty in International Security at the School of Global Public Affairs of the American University in Cairo, and a course lecturer on Multilateral Diplomacy at DiploFoundation. He has held leading positions in multilateral negotiations including Rapporteur of the United Nations’ Special Committee on Peacekeeping in 2015, Coordinator for Peacekeeping of the African Group Experts in NY in 2015, Coordinator for Disarmament of the Arab Group Experts in New York from 2011 to 2015, Vice Chair of the UN Disarmament Commission in 2013, Facilitator for the International Tracing Instrument for the Second Review Conference on the UN Program of Action on Small Arms and Light Weapons in 2012, Vice Chair of the General Assembly's First Committee (on Disarmament and International Security) in 2011, Chair of WTO’s Committee on Information Technology Agreement in 2007, Chair of the Negotiating Group on Market Access the Global System of Trade Preferences in 2007, and was twice Coordinator of the African Group to UNCTAD and the ITU (2003-2005).
Amb. Aljowaily’s previous diplomatic postings are New York, Geneva, and Washington, DC. At the Foreign Ministry, he served as Deputy Assistant Foreign Minister for United Nations Affairs, Egypt; Director of UN Affairs; member of the Cabinets of the Minister and First Undersecretary and the departments of multilateral political and economic issues. He was a member of the Egyptian delegations to summits and ministerial meetings of WSIS, the South Summit, the League of Arab States, the African Union, as well as UNCTADXI and the ITU Plenipotentiary 2006. He was Board Member of the Institute for Diplomatic Studies (1994–1996) and Coordinator of International Relations at the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (2001–2003).
His career began in print and broadcast journalism, and in research centres. He published some of the earliest analytical works in Arabic on ICTs and International Relations, and continues to publish in the field of multilateral diplomacy, especially on issues related to international peace and security. His latest publication is the edited book Serbia in Egyptian Eyes: Diplomatic Memories and Cultural Memoirs, released 17 January 2018.
Amb. Aljowaily holds a BA in Political Science and an MA in Middle East Studies from the American University in Cairo (AUC), an MSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and a Postgraduate Diploma in Contemporary Diplomacy from the University of Malta. He has participated in numerous executive training activities, including the select Missions Leaders’ Course of the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations.
Amb. Petru Dumitriu United Nations Joint Inspection Unit
Ambassador Petru Dumitriu is a Romanian diplomat who joined the Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) of the United Nations system in 2016 as Inspector, elected by the General Assembly. He earned his doctorate with a thesis on United Nations reform. He has published extensively on various United Nations topics, including a book on United Nations reform. During his diplomatic career, he served as representative of his country in various governing bodies of United Nations organisations (UNICEF, UNESCO) and in the bureaus of several General Assembly subsidiary bodies, including as Rapporteur for the World Summit on the Information Society (2003). He was also Ambassador and Permanent Observer of the Council of Europe to the United Nations–Geneva. As Director and Director-General in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Romania (1998-2001, 2006-2010) he acted as national coordinator on behalf of the government in relation to the United Nations country team. He is author of JIU reports on Knowledge Management in the United Nations System, The United Nations – Private Sector Partnership Arrangements in the Context of the 2030 Agenda, and Strengthening Policy Research Uptake. He received the Knowledge Management Award in 2017 and the Sustainable Development Award in 2019 for his reports.
Dr André Saramago Online Learning and Research Associate
Originally from Setúbal and now based in Coimbra, Portugal, André Saramago is an Assistant Professor of International Relations at the University of Coimbra. He is also a researcher in the fields of international relations theory, international historical sociology and East Asia. André has been working with DiploFoundation since 2017, first as a research consultant, tutor, and course coordinator, and currently as Online Learning and Research Associate. He holds an MA in International Relations (University of Lisbon, Portugal) and a PhD in International Politics (University of Aberystwyth, UK).
DiploFoundation (attn Tanja Nikolic)
Anutruf, Ground Floor, Hriereb Street
Msida, MSD 1675, Malta
Explore the origins of multilateral diplomacy and its evolution within a dynamic and rapidly changing environment.
This course introduces participants to the diplomatic interaction among more than two actors, with particular emphasis on the multilateral diplomacy represented by the United Nations system. Participants examine an overview of all protagonists and their roles, as well as the complex framework, intricate rules and methods of multilateral diplomacy. These challenging topics are complemented by insights into the processes leading to the adoption of documents by states within international organisations, as well the current transformations affecting the multilateral system. Using illustrative case studies, the course blends an academic perspective with the experience of current practitioners of multilateral diplomacy.
By the end of the course, participants should be able to:
Provide an overview of multilateral diplomacy from its origins through to current changes introduced by globalisation and new information and communication technologies.
Describe the roles of traditional and new stakeholders with interest and influence in multilateral organisations.
Discuss the various forums and forms of multilateral diplomacy, from the formal to the informal, identifying the rules, methods, processes and actors involved in each.
Describe the institutional framework within which multilateral diplomacy operates.
Provide examples, and analyse how multilateral diplomacy is responding to factors such as political changes, globalisation and the growing influence of the business sector and civil society.
Excerpt from course materials
Why is consensus necessary?
A widespread belief suggests that decisions taken by consensus have greater political force than those that one or more delegations have refused to support. Many governments and delegates dislike the overt confrontation and sense of victory and defeat that voting conveys.
Multilateral meetings are co-operative endeavours and one of their main tasks is to produce and project the assurance of a prevailing collaborative spirit. This spirit is visible if all participants consent to the decision adopted. A more practical interpretation, however, of why consensus is necessary is that on many issues most countries find it possible to accept language with which they are not entirely satisfied, but with which they are not in strong opposition. If called upon to vote on the same proposal or document, they might feel obliged to vote against or signify lack of enthusiasm or the presence of a reservation, by registering an abstention.
Origin, evolution, and objectives of multilateral diplomacy: a brief historic preface covering key events that have marked the evolution of multilateral diplomacy. We examine existing intergovernmental organisations created by treaties concluded among member countries, dealing with the increasing number of issues that need international debate, action and regulation.
Actors: sovereign states are still the main protagonists in multilateral diplomacy, but we are currently witnessing the increased involvement of non-state actors, including non-governmental organisations, representatives of civil society and the business community. Both traditional and new actors are discussed.
Framework: we examine the increasingly diverse bodies within which governments and other actors cooperate, while their responsibilities and mandates cover ever more demanding areas and new challenges.
Rules: despite the importance of the full observance of the constitutive acts of various international organisations, including their rules of procedure, multilateral diplomacy embraces constantly new forms of interaction, thus reflecting the need for flexibility and rapid adaptability to a dynamic environment.
Methods: Nowadays only a part of the multilateral diplomatic effort takes place in formal and solemn settings. The interaction among various actors extends to a number of modalities, including informal contacts and spontaneous coalitions of the willing. We look at both formal and informal methods of multilateral diplomacy.
Process: the preparation of diplomatic events is manifold, and depends on the level at which it is undertaken: national or international, formal or informal, on substance or on procedures.
New developments: We consider the crucial changes which globalisation has introduced into the multilateral context, including the emergence of new stakeholders with interests and resources to influence the behaviour and power of states.
United Nations concepts for global governance: this final lecture proposes ways that the UN can change the world, its own vision and its instruments without changing the Charter. Innovative concepts constitute a reaction to the dynamics of world affairs and to the challenges of globalisation. The concepts are illustrated by several multi-faceted approaches to an increasingly interdependent world where classic concepts such as development and security no longer reflect reality.
This course will be of interest to:
Practising diplomats, civil servants, and others working in international relations who want to refresh or expand their knowledge under the guidance of experienced practitioners and academics.
Postgraduate students of diplomacy or international relations wishing to study topics not offered through their university programmes or diplomatic academies and to gain deeper insight through interaction with practising diplomats.
Postgraduate students or practitioners in other fields seeking an entry point into the world of diplomacy.
Journalists, staff of international and non-governmental organisations, translators, business people and others who interact with diplomats and wish to improve their understanding of diplomacy-related topics.
This course is conducted entirely online over a period of ten weeks. Reading materials and tools for online interaction are provided through an online classroom. Each week, participants read the provided lecture text, adding questions, comments and references in the form of hypertext entries. Lecturers and other participants read and respond to these entries, creating interaction based on the lecture text. During the week, participants complete additional online activities (e.g. further discussion via blogs or forums, quizzes, group tasks, simulations or short assignments). At the end of the week, participants and lecturers meet online in a chat room to discuss the week’s topic. To complete the course successfully, participants must write several essay assignments. Courses are based on a collaborative approach to learning, involving a high level of interaction.
This course requires a minimum of five to seven hours of study time per week.
All course applicants must have regular access to the Internet (dial-up connection is sufficient, although broadband is preferable).
Applicants for certificate courses must have:
An undergraduate university degree OR three years of work experience and appropriate professional qualifications in diplomacy or international relations.
Sufficient ability in the English language to undertake postgraduate level studies (including reading academic texts, discussing complex concepts with other course participants, and submitting written essay assignments of up to 2500 words in length).
Applicants for accredited courses must meet University of Malta prerequisites:
Bachelor's degree in a relevant subject with at least Second Class Honours.
English language proficiency certificate obtained within the last two years (minimum requirements: Internet-based TOEFL (iBT) – 95 (with a writing score of at least 24); IELTS: 6.5 (with a minimum of 6.0 in each element); Cambridge: Advanced Certificate with Grade C or better). Please indicate on the application form if you are still waiting for your English language proficiency results.
Course fees depend on whether you wish to obtain university credit for the course:
€850 (University of Malta Accredited Course)
€690 (Diplo Certificate Course)
Applicants must pay full fees upon official acceptance into the course. The fee includes:
Access to all course materials online, via Diplo’s online classroom
Personal interaction via the online classroom with course lecturers, staff and other participants
Online technical support
University of Malta application fee (for University of Malta Accredited Courses only)
Access, via the Internet, to the University of Malta e-journal collection (University of Malta Accredited Courses only)
For Diplo Certificate Courses, postgraduate level e-certificate issued by DiploFoundation on successful completion of course requirements (interaction and participation, all assignments) which can be printed or shared electronically via a permanent link
Discounts are available for more than one participant from the same institution. A limited number of partial scholarships are available for diplomats and others working in international relations from developing countries.
To apply for a scholarship please upload your CV and a motivation letter with your application. The motivation letter should include:
Details of your relevant professional and educational background.
Reasons for your interest in the course.
Why you feel you should have the opportunity to participate in this course: how will your participation benefit you, your institution and/or your country?
As Diplo's ability to offer scholarship support is limited, candidates are strongly encouraged to seek scholarship funding directly from local or international institutions.
Certified copies of original degree(s) and official transcripts.
English translations of degree(s) and transcripts if they are not in English, signed and stamped by translator.
English language proficiency certificate obtained within the last two years (minimum requirements TOEFL: paper-based – 650; Internet-based – 95. IELTS: 6.5. Cambridge: Proficiency Certificate with Grade C or better). Please indicate on the application form if you are still waiting for your English language proficiency results.
Photocopy of personal details pages of your passport.
If you are requesting financial assistance, please include your CV and a motivation letter with your application. The motivation letter should include details of your relevant professional and educational background; reasons for your interest in the course; and why you feel you should have the opportunity to participate in this course: i.e. how will your participation benefit you, your institution and/or your country? Financial assistance from DiploFoundation is available only to applicants from developing countries.
Anutruf, Ground Floor
Msida, MSD 1675, Malta
Diplo reserves the right to cancel this course if enrolment is insufficient. In case of cancellation, Diplo will notify applicants shortly after the application deadline. Applicants who have paid an application fee may apply this fee towards another course or receive a refund.