The Rethinking Diplomacy Program (RDP) at Duke University focuses on research that brings together diplomats, policy practitioners, faculty, and leading experts in various disciplines for academic collaboration, policy recommendations, and scholarship. The Program aims to provide a forum for redefining the roles of diplomacy in an increasingly globalized and interdependent world, which is characterized by the rise of new international actors, the emergence of contentious political debates within democratic countries, and the relative rise of authoritarian states. It also seeks to identify the skills that would enable diplomats, negotiators, and representatives of public and private institutions to address problems with sophistication, cultural competence and sectoral expertise.
Goals to achieve broad human progress, as set forth in the UN's Sustainable Development Goals, require not only a new look at the emerging global challenges but a new look at diplomacy's capacity to deal with them. One of RDP's principal goals is to highlight the importance of the combination of soft skills (e.g. communication, cultural awareness, ability to negotiate) and expertise in public health, demography, environment, energy, trade, finance, water, food and other areas in which Duke University features strong academic programs. Through the exchange of ideas, technical expertise, knowledge of world regions, and interaction with practitioners, the Program prepares Duke students and fellows with skills that would enable them to succeed in pursuit of their academic goals and beyond.
The Rethinking Diplomacy Program is supported by a grant from the Josiah Charles Trent Memorial Foundation Endowment Fund.
Watch the highlights of the program:
Duke Libraries have designed a new library guide for the Rethinking Diplomacy Program: https://guides.library.duke.edu/rubenstein_diplomacy.
Insights from the inaugural event:
Diplomacy can meet urgent and complicated 21st century challenges, but only by taking a fresh look at the tools used to make it work, W. Robert Pearson, former U.S. ambassador to Turkey and former director general of the U.S. foreign service said at Duke on January 23. “Truth is elusive. Knowledge is imperfect. Things happen,” Robert Pearson said. “This is forever work, as long as we inhabit the globe.”
Read more about the event on Duke Today.
Full-conference video available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9JtHHb3Wzu4
Other recent events for the Rethinking Diplomacy program include:
- Impact of COVID-19 & Global Supply Chains: Will Western Brands Pay Up for Bangladesh Apparel Supplies?
- Balancing National Unity and Global Solidarity in Responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Conversation with Dr. David Nabarro, Special Envoy to the WHO Director-General on COVID-19
- Science-Diplomacy and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Advancing Science Diplomacy in a Time of Crisis
- FOOD SUPPLY CHAINS AND COVID-19: Mother Nature and Selective Resilience
- The COVID-19 Pandemic and Global Supply Chains: Disruptions and Restructuring
- Rethinking Health Diplomacy: driving global health progress using diplomacy