Leadership and Diplomacy is designed for students interested in studying diplomacy from a leadership
perspective. The course examines the role of leadership in the evolution and changing nature of the
diplomatic dialogue between states over the past century, concentrating on challenges for diplomatic
leadership at this moment in history. These challenges include: great-power leadership, notably the special
role of US leadership; changing diplomatic practices requiring leadership, such as the widespread use of
summit, conference, and public diplomacy; revolutionary and post-colonial leadership; individual leadership
(the UN secretary-general) and moral leadership (Nelson Mandela); “middle power” and small-country
leadership; regional diplomatic leadership; and, finally, non-state alternatives to state-based diplomatic
The course will be useful not only for those students contemplating diplomatic and government careers, but
also for those whose future work in business, the media, or the non-profit sectors will require interaction with
foreign ministries, embassies, ambassadors and international organizations.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- display a sound general knowledge of some of the main ideas about diplomacy, especially its bilateral and multilateral forms, with an introduction to its transnational forms.
- understand the world of diplomacy and the leadership roles and activities of diplomats.
- enhanced verbal and personal communication skills through interactive discussion and debate.
- strengthen skills in analyzing the organization and conduct of power in contemporary international affairs through the lens of diplomacy and, therefore, to be able to better understand current events and policy concerns.
- demonstrate historical, theoretical, and practical perspectives on leadership and diplomacy.
- 1. Class participation 10% (LO 1, 2, 3) (10) [LO null]
- 2. Class presentation/reading summary (or rapporteurship) 20% (LO 1, 2, 3) (20) [LO null]
- 3. Empirical Tests (two of three count) - 20% (LO 1, 2, 4, 5) (20) [LO null]
- 4. Mid-semester paper- 20% (LO 1, 2, 4, 5) (20) [LO null]
- 5. Final exam (take-home) - 30% (LO 1, 2, 4, 5) (30) [LO null]
In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle.
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10 hours per week comprising a mix of in-class lectures, interactive discussions and debates along with individual reading and assessment
Requisite and Incompatibility
Pauline Kerr and Geoffrey Wiseman (eds), Diplomacy in a Globalizing World: Theories and Practices, New York, Oxford University Press, 2018. Companion website for Diplomacy in a Globalizing World: www.oup.com/us/Kerr
Preliminary ReadingWarren Bennis, “Understanding the Basics,” On Becoming a Leader, New York:
Addison-Wesley, 1994, pp. 39-51
Corneliu Bjola, “Diplomatic Leadership in Times of International Crisis: The Maverick, The Congregator, and The Pragmatist,” The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, vol. 10, no. 1 (2015), pp. 4-9
H D P Envall, "Leadership and Diplomacy," in Enval, Japanese Diplomacy, Albany NY: SUNY Press, pp. 13-36.
Raymond Cohen, “Diplomacy Through the Ages” ch. 1 in Pauline Kerr and Geoffrey Wiseman (eds), Diplomacy in a Globalizing World: Theories and Practices (hereafter DGW), New York, Oxford University Press, 2013, pp. 15-30.
Harold Nicolson, “The Ideal Diplomatist,” Diplomacy (first published in 1939), Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1969, pp. 55-67
Harold Nicolson, “The Transition Between the Old Diplomacy and the New,” The Evolution of Diplomacy (1954), New York: Collier, 1966, pp. 99-125
The Kennan “Long Telegram,” in Kenneth M. Jensen (ed.), Origins of the Cold War: The Novikov, Kennan, and Roberts ‘Long Telegrams” of 1946, rev.ed., Washington DC: United States Institute of Peace, 1993, preface, pp. 3-31, 73-95
Alan Henrikson, United States Contemporary Diplomacy: Implementing a Foreign Policy of ‘Engagement’”, Section on “Containment” in DGW, pp. 268-270.
I. William Zartman, “Diplomacy as Negotiation and Mediation”, ch. 6 in DGW, pp. 103-119.
CNN, The Cold War, video excerpt of Kennan and Long Telegram (shown in class).
Video-documentary: National Geographic, “Ambassador” (to be shown in class).
Janne Nolan, “The Terrorist Bombings of U.S. Embassies in East Africa,” in Tyranny of Consensus: Discourse and Dissent in American National Security Policy, New York: The Century Foundation Press, 2013, pp. 63-94.
James Risen and Benjamin Weiser, “Before Bombing, Omens and Fears,” The New York Times, Jan. 9, 199 [Download both from newyorktimes.com].
Geoffrey Wiseman “Distinctive Characteristics of American Diplomacy,” The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, vol. 6, nos. 3-4, December 2012, pp. 235 ¬—259
Raymond Seitz, Over Here, London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1998, pp. 277-93 [Blackboard].
Warren Hoge, “U.S. Leaked British Intelligence to I.R.A., Ex-Envoy Says,” The New York Times, January 19, 1999 [Download from newyorktimes.com.
James F. Clarity, “A Kennedy Bids Irish Farewell, The New York Times, July 26, 1998 [Download from newyorktimes.com].
Alan Henrikson, United States Contemporary Diplomacy: Implementing a Foreign Policy of ‘Engagement’”, ch. 15, in DGW, pp. 265-281.
Bill Keller, “The World According to Powell,” The New York Times Magazine, November 25, 2001 (Download from newyorktimes.com).
J. Anthony Holmes, “Where are the Civilians? How to Rebuild the U.S. Foreign Service,” Foreign Affairs, Jan/Feb. 2009, pp. 148-60
Paul Sharp, “Obama, Clinton and the Diplomacy of Change, The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, vol. 6, nos. 3-4, December 2012, pp. 393-411.
David Armstrong, “The Diplomacy of Revolutionary States,” in Melissen, Innovation in
Diplomatic Practice, pp. 43-59
Geoffrey Wiseman and Soumita Basu, “The United Nations,” in DGW, pp. 319-335.
David Bosco, “Course Corrections: The Obama Administration at the United Nations,” The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, vol. 6, nos. 3-4, December 2012, pp. 335-349.
Three short articles from Foreign Policy Magazine on Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon, pp. 1-6.
Geoffrey Wiseman, “Diplomatic practices at the United Nations,” Cooperation and Conflict, 2015, pp. 1-18.
Alan Chong, “Singapore and the Soft Power Experience,” in Andrew F. Cooper and Timothy M. Shaw (eds), The Diplomacies of Small States: Between Vulnerability and Resilience, Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009, pp. 65—80.
A & E documentary biography “Nelson Mandela: Journey to Freedom.” (To be shown in class).
Andrew F. Cooper, “Leveraging Iconic Status,” in Diplomatic Afterlives, Polity Press, 2015, pp. 99-123.
Marie Muller, “The Diplomacy of Reintegration: South Africa into the Fold,” in Melissen, Innovation in Diplomatic Practice, pp. 60-76
Jozef Batora and Alan Hardacre, “Regional institutional Diplomacies: Europe, Asia, Africa, South America and Other Regions,” in ch. 17 in DGW, pp. 300-318.
Ye Zicheng and Zhang Qingmin, “China’s Contemporary Diplomacy,” ch. 16 in DGW, pp. 282-299.
Richard Rosecrance, “The Rise of the Virtual State,” Foreign Affairs, vol. 75, no. 4 (July/August 1996), pp. 45-61.
Pauline Kerr and Brendan Taylor, “Track-Two Diplomacy in East Asia,” in DGW, pp. 226-243.
Jovan Kurbalija, “The Impact of the Internet and ICT on Contemporary Diplomacy,” ch, 8 in DGW, pp. 141-159.
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If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees. Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
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Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.