The Emirates Diplomatic Academy, EDA, has organised a three-day interactive training session, ‘Introduction to Diplomacy’, to develop the core diplomatic skills of participants and enable them to understand the multi-dimensional process of policy-making in external relations.
Led by Dr. John Hemery, Founder and Director of the Centre for Political and Diplomatic Studies, the training session included active discussions on the origins and development of diplomacy and addressed the rapidly-changing international context of globalisation. It also covered the elements of continuity and change and the role and work of embassies as well as the importance of effective public diplomacy and the increasing prominence of multilateral institutions.
The highlight of the course was a lecture by Philip Parham, Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the UAE, on the topic, ‘The Duties of the Ambassador’. Mr. Parham said that an ambassador is first and foremost a diplomat, and pointed out that one of the primary responsibilities of an ambassador is to represent the political interests of his or her country in the host nation, including communicating how the government feels about key issues of relevance to both countries.
Mariam Al Mahmoud, Director of Executive Education and spokesperson at EDA, said, "The EDA model of education is designed to strengthen the UAE’s competitive advantage in the international and regional arena, making it a unique model in diplomatic capacity development. The training programme on diplomacy introduced participants to the multi-dimensional process of policy-making in external relations, and highlighted the ways in which governments interact with other entities at home and abroad in modern diplomacy."
On the first day of the training, seminars were conducted on topics such as, 'Practice of Diplomacy: its evolution, theory and administration; Changing context of diplomacy; New roles of Embassies and Missions; and Practicalities of diplomacy: influencing and networking'. At the end of the day, the participants were divided into teams for group exercises. The second day covered the topics Public diplomacy: theory, evolution and current practice; UAE as an actor in multilateral institutions, and Economic and Environmental Diplomacy.
As an integrated centre for diplomatic training, EDA offers Post-Graduate Diploma Programme for the graduates to gain the skills and confidence required to effectively represent the UAE in the international arena. It also provides short-term Executive Education courses training courses targeted at current employees in the fields of foreign policy and diplomacy in the UAE. In the area of research and analysis, the academy conducts in-depth studies on the region and the UAE to build a knowledge base in the field of international relations and diplomacy.