Andrey Sushentsov

Programme Director of the Valdai Discussion Club; Dean of the School of International Relations at MGIMO University

The crumbling of international order and security institutions in the second half of the 20th century poses an applied question for the foreign policy community: what is the role of diplomacy in the new conditions? The situation of prolonged confrontation, the deep crisis of trust between elites, post-truth, and digital communications are qualitatively changing the environment of diplomatic communication and the profession itself. The need for large-scale embassies is decreasing and the ability to maintain them is waning, their functions being curtailed to consular issues and support for the frequent visits of top officials. 

How will the international relations crisis influence the diplomatic profession and the diplomats themselves: will they become ordinary bureaucrats or will it incentivise them to develop new skills and capabilities?

What set of applied skills and worldview should 21st century politicians and diplomats have, and how does it differ from the classic menu of recent decades?

This programme continues the International Conflict and Political Leadership Programme.