The EU’s Digital Response to #COVID19

Since it first migrated outside China, the Corona virus has dominated news cycles as pundits offer the public a variety of doomsday scenarios. This was true even before the virus crippled Italy or left many dead in Spain. The Corona virus makes for good ratings for several reasons. First, during the 20th and 21st century... Continue Reading →

Revisiting Putnam’s two-level game theory in the digital age: Domestic digital diplomacy and the Iran nuclear deal

Note: This post was originally published on the blog of the Cambridge Review of International Affairs and was co-authored with Corneliu Bjola.   In 1988, Robert Putnam conceptualised diplomatic negotiations as a two-level game in which national and international politics often collide. In this framework, constituents and interest groups (labour unions, activist groups, etc.) pursue their interests at... Continue Reading →

The Evolution of WhatsApp as a Diplomatic Tool

In December of 2014, I conducted a series of interviews with Geneva based Ambassadors hoping to understand how smartphones had influenced the conduct of diplomacy. Through these interviews I learned that  Ambassadors were increasingly using the messaging application WhatsApp to communicate with their peers. Such communication influenced diplomacy in three ways. First, the Ambassadors stated... Continue Reading →

Can Digital Diplomacy Really Start A War?

On August 13th, 2017, Nick Miller published an article in The Sydney Morning Herald titled "Getting it wrong could start a war: Welcome to age of digital diplomacy". The article, which attracted much media and social media attention, proposed that digital diplomacy could actually facilitate war between states. Similar sentiments have been expressed in recent... Continue Reading →

Diplomacy in the Age of Simulacra

The age of Simulacra Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure is known for his theory of signifier and signified. A "signifier" is a verbal reference to a given object, while "signified" is the actual object being referred too. For instance, the word "chair" is the signifier for the object on which individuals sit in an office... Continue Reading →

Crisis Communication, Crisis Management & Digital Diplomacy

Crisis Communication as Crisis Management  Crisis communication may be regarded as a field of inquiry that has benefited from numerous disciplines including international relations, diplomacy studies, psychology and communication studies. While each discipline focuses on a specific facet of crisis communication, all are in consensus that a crisis represents a major challenge to governments. This... Continue Reading →

Six Degrees of Foreign Policy Narration

There seems to a prevailing opinion among International Relations’ scholars that our world is one of perpetual crises. The moment one crisis ends, such as the threat of Ebola, another begins, such as Russian military involvement in Syria. Communication has always been an integral part of crisis management. Moreover, diplomatic crises are often defined as... Continue Reading →

Palestine’s Online Line of Defence

As the violence between Israel and Palestine continued to escalate over the past week, both parties took to social media in order to offer their narrative of events. Last week I explored Israel’s official narrative by analysing tweets published by Israel’s MFA. What struck me most was the fact that Israel’s narrative seems to completely... Continue Reading →

What can we learn from digital diplomacy?

One of the major questions arising from the study of digital diplomacy deals with its practical application. In other words, what can we really learn from digital diplomacy? In the past, I have conducted several analyses which suggest that MFAs now routinely follow one another on twitter. As such, MFAs may be using social media... Continue Reading →

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