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DiploNews – Issue 347 – 16 May 2018

Upcoming study opportunities

Summer online diplomacy courses

Is summer a quiet time in your office? Then it’s the perfect opportunity to take an online course. Have a look at our courses on diplomacy and Internet technology that start on 23 July:

Apply by 21 May for University of Malta accredited courses and by 18 June for Diplo certificate courses. For further information or to apply, click on the titles of the courses listed, or visit our courses webpage. Register now to reserve your place. 

Malta scholarships

Thanks to support from the government of Malta, partial scholarships are available for applicants from developing countries to attend upcoming Diplo online courses. These scholarships cover 30%–60% of course fees and can be applied to most online courses in 2018. Browse our course catalogue and contact us at admissions@diplomacy.edu for further information. You can also sign up for our courses mailing list to be informed about upcoming courses.

Diplo and the Geneva Internet Platform at RightsCon

Join us for one of the two sessions at RightsCon or visit us at our booth.

The elephant in the room: The funding dimension of capacity development

The need for capacity development is voiced substantively and regularly in official speeches and documents. Experienced facilitators and consultants are active in this area. However, supply and demand do not always match. Quality capacity development requires resources, and very often those most qualified in education cannot devote the time and effort required for fundraising. Who should pay for capacity development activities? Those most in need, such as those from least developed countries (LDCs), find it difficult to pay. Several pioneer countries (e.g. Switzerland, with the Geneva Internet Platform project) have gone beyond their own capacity development needs and expanded their provision to the global community. Going further, should the responsibility for funding lie with developed country governments, with the private sector, or with the numerous foundations or NGOs? What, if any, is the responsibility of participants to self-fund?


Bay Area tech companies and governments: Discovering the art of conversation

The Internet industry in the Bay Area is of vital importance for countries worldwide. The Bay Area tech sector provides services for, and collects data of, citizens worldwide. It plays a key role, not only in the governance of data, but also in the implementation of voluntary data standards. Some Internet companies provide platforms for communication and democratic dialogue and are seen as key partners in the efforts to curb fake news or fight extremist propaganda online. The significant impact of Internet companies on society is not matched by the existence of clear frameworks for dialogue with other stakeholders. This discussion is very timely, as governments are under increasing pressure to take up more regulatory responsibilities and contribute to the public good.

Diplo’s session will identify existing formal and informal mechanisms for dialogue and the themes covered in the interaction between the Internet industry and governments. We will discuss good governance practices enhancing transparency and accountability, as well as the possibility of their application. The roundtable will assess if and how dialogue in the Bay Area could help to introduce early (or ‘by design’) technical and policy considerations that could help to uphold human rights and fundamental freedoms and strengthen democracy. The roundtable builds on Diplo’s ongoing research to map the range of models that countries are adopting to interact with companies in the Bay Area. See more at www.diplomacy.edu/bayarea 

What’s been happening in Diplo’s blogsphere

In her blog post, Andrijana Gavrilovic summarises the key points of Diplo’s recent WebDebate on the question Can we teach and learn negotiation skills online? The speakers, Ambassadors Kishan S. Rana and Stefano Baldi, and Dr Katharina E. Höne, agreed that simulation exercises are crucial for teaching negotiations and looked at how this can be accomplished online. They pointed to opportunities and limits of teaching negotiations online while emphasising that there is greater need for teaching negotiation skills, both in situ and online.

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