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DiploNews – Issue 204 – 15 May 2012

Upcoming study opportunities

Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty

With growing calls to make the process of nuclear disarmament comprehensive and irreversible, the resurgence and the need to sustain nuclear arms control diplomacy, the persistence of unresolved nuclear proliferation issues (including in Iran and North Korea), and the desire for nuclear energy, coupled with safety and security concerns, the 40-year old Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) remains central to the prospects for disarmament, arms control and international security. Familiarity with the NPT is increasingly indispensable for practitioners and analysts to navigate their way through current and future nuclear issues. The Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP), in collaboration with DiploFoundation, is pleased to offer a unique opportunity to learn more about the NPT and disarmament through this online course.

The course runs from 16 July to 16 September 2012. The application deadline is 11 June 2012. Partial scholarships are available for applicants from developing countries. Please visit our website for more information and to apply.

Summer online courses in diplomacy

We are now accepting applications for our interactive summer online courses: 

Courses start the week of 23 July 2012. Apply by 21 May for University of Malta Accredited Courses and 18 June for Diplo Certificate Courses. For further information or to apply, click on the titles of the courses above, or visit our courses website. Register now to reserve your place.

Diplo at WSIS 2012: Discussing Remote Participation

The Internet has entered conference rooms worldwide. Discussions are broadcast globally. Reporting is provided via social media. More and more people are engaged in global policy-making. Remote participation opens up new opportunities for more inclusive global policy-making. It also poses new challenges of integrating remote participation in the modus operandi of multilateral diplomacy.

Within its E-diplomacy initiative, Diplo is largely focused on the use of e-tools in diplomacy, with a special focus on e-participation. In cooperation with its partners – the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the Central European Initiative (CEI),  Diplo will organise a panel on remote participation at the ITU WSIS Forum 2012, taking place in Geneva 14-18 May. The panel will look at questions such as how to ensure effective interplay between face-to-face and remote participation in international meetings; the legal status of remote participants in multilateral meetings; and how existing rules of procedure can facilitate remote participation, and new diplomatic skills required for effective remote participation (e.g. chairing, reporting, drafting). The panel takes place on Thursday, 17th May 2012, 16.15-18.00 CET in Room IV in ILO, Geneva. Remote participation will also be available.

What’s been happening in Diplo’s blogosphere

Hannah Slavik wonders whether we will need to reconstruct teaching and learning in the wake of the  ‘tsunami’ in online education.  Mary Murphy asks whether social media is in fact creating a new set of communication barriers. As our month of social media coaching continues, you can check out Stephanie Borg-Psaila’s webinar on Twitter.  Aldo Matteucci, Diplo’s resident contrarian, wrote three thought-provoking texts on planning, managing and predicting. He wonders whether outcome is a good measure of performance? When it comes to prediction, does it pay to develop sophisticated methods?  And as for planning – Aldo is no friend of ‘top down’ planning and has often chided anyone believing that this can be done meaningfully. He writes more in his post Putting planning on its head. Aini is a young Asian diplomat struggling to make sense of the Internet issues that she often has to deal with in her job, telling her story of Learning with Diplo. 

Discussing Internet Governance

The first Serbian Internet Dialogue took place recently in Belgrade. In ‘The path towards the first Serbian Internet Dialogue’, Nikola Božić writes about the developments that led to this event, and describes the interaction with the participants during one of the panels he co-moderated during the event. On our community platform, IGCBP12 tutor Marsha Guthrie talks about the key topics that the participants of the African group have been discussing during the Introduction to Internet governance course. The issues included access, funding for small, developing countries, and ICT education in schools and communities. Mwende Njiraini shares a study, conducted by ISOC, on the impact of the Internet Exchange Points of Kenya and Nigeria. In a second blog post, she talks about existing telco business models in Kenya that are seen to be under threat, and explores the possibility of increasing the contribution of mobile number portability to overcome this problem. Jorge Jose Lawand talks about the recent discussions by the ITU on changes to the 1988 treaty that may place international regulations on the Internet. Trevor Phipps shares two articles from ZDNet related to privacy: the first refers to FBI’s request to Internet companies not to oppose a controversial proposal that would require the firms to build in backdoors for government surveillance; the second refers Microsoft’s subpoenas on Google to disrupt a criminal botnet. Robert Kikonyogo shares information about a competition for innovative and sustainable ICT solutions for the health sector in Africa, launched by the African Development Bank (AfDB), while Kadian Davis reminds us about the WSIS Forum 2012, jointly organised by UNESCO, the ITU, UNCTAD, and the UNDP, which is taking place this week in Geneva (remote participation is available).

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