Digital diplomacy

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Digital diplomacy, also referred to as eDiplomacy (see below), has been defined as the use of the Internet and new information communication technologies to help achieve diplomatic objectives.[1] However, other definitions have also been proposed.[2]

In common usage the term digital diplomacy is often used as a synonym, but the meanings are distinct. The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office defines digital diplomacy as 'solving foreign policy problems using the internet',[3] a narrower definition that excludes internal electronic collaboration tools and mobile phone and tablet-based diplomacy. The US State Department uses the term 21st Century Statecraft[4] The Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development calls it Open Policy.[5]

History[edit]

The first foreign ministry to establish a dedicated ediplomacy unit was the US State Department, which created the Taskforce on eDiplomacy in 2002. This Taskforce has since been renamed the Office of eDiplomacy and has approximately 80 staff members, about half of which are dedicated to ediplomacy-related work.

Other foreign ministries have also begun to embrace ediplomacy. The UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office has an Office of Digital Diplomacy that is involved in a range of ediplomacy activities.[1]

In July 2012, global public relations and communications firm Burson-Marsteller studied the use of Twitter by heads of state and government, referred to as Twitter diplomacy. The study on Twiplomacy [6] found that there were 264 Twitter accounts of heads of state and government and their institutions in 125 countries world-wide and that only 30 leaders tweet personally. [7] [8] [9]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Fergus Hanson, 'A Digital DFAT: Joining the 21st century', Lowy Institute, November 2012, http://www.lowyinstitute.org/Publication.asp?pid=1432
  2. ^ DiploFoundation, 'E-Diplomacy definition' http://edip.diplomacy.edu/forum-def and Alec Ross, HubForum, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsMWA_nKkFo
  3. ^ Foreign and Commonwealth Office, 'What is digital diplomacy?', http://digitaldiplomacy.fco.gov.uk/en/about/digital-diplomacy/
  4. ^ "21st Century Statecraft". US State Department. 
  5. ^ "The Cadieux-Léger Fellowship". DFAIT. 
  6. ^ "Twiplomacy - Mutual Relations on Twitter". Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  7. ^ "TWEET THIS: STUDY FINDS LIMITS TO NEW 'TWIPLOMACY'". Associated Press. 26 July 2012. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  8. ^ Miles, Tom (26 July 2012). "@tweeter-in-chief? Obama's outsourced tweets top twitocracy". Reuters. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 
  9. ^ Khazan, Olga (26 July 2012). "Diplomats on Twitter: Putin follows no one". Washington Post. Retrieved 17 August 2012. 

External links[edit]