The origins of diplomacy can be traced back to at least 4,500 years ago, when, in ancient Mesopotamia (now modern Iraq), sovereigns of political units (then tribes or city-states) sought recognition and communication with each other. These same processes are the core of contemporary diplomacy. But much has changed. The revolution in communications technology provides political units (now states and organisations) and global citizens with constant digital, verbal and visual connections in real-time. The impact of this change on diplomacy is a matter of much debate. By analysing continuities and changes in conceptualisations, structures, processes and practices of diplomacy this course invites students to develop their own arguments about the nature and value of contemporary diplomacy, at a time when managing national and global issues cooperatively has never been more critical.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:1. Analyse early practices of diplomacy and compare and contrast them with present practices
2. Understand key concepts, discuss counterfactuals, and evaluate changes and continuities in diplomatic structures, processes and practices from early to contemporary times and explain why, where possible, such changes and continuities take place
3. Critically assess the strengths and weaknesses of contemporary diplomatic practice and suggest strategies for better practice
4. Analyse the conceptual and theoretical evolutions of diplomacy in order to explain whether, on the one hand, diplomacy can be theorised or whether, on the other hand, as some practitioners suggest, theories of diplomacy are either too difficult to establish or are, in any case, of little practical value
5. Analyse and critically evaluate the debate about the nature of contemporary diplomacy and whether or not the proposition that it can be understood as ‘complex diplomacy’ is apt.
1. Podcast – 10%
2. Online discussion forum – 10%
3. Minute papers – 20%
4. Presentation – 20%
5. Written assignment – 40%
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Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.
|Class number||Class start date||Last day to enrol||Census date||Class end date||Mode Of Delivery||Class Summary|
|3184||20 Jul 2015||07 Aug 2015||31 Aug 2015||30 Oct 2015||Blended||N/A|