Diplomacy isn't Dead After All

Vanessa Thevathasan (Non-Executive Director) offers a quarterly summary of Grassroot Diplomat's latest activities and innovations for January - April 2017.

Vanessa Thevathasan, Non-Executive Director

Vanessa Thevathasan, Non-Executive Director

The year began with the war in Syria entering its sixth year, the impeachment of South Korean President igniting discussion of its ripple effect to other nations, the warrant of a North Korean diplomat for the assassination of Kim Jong-nam and the worst humanitarian crisis unfolding in Africa. How we respond to these issues will help shape the kind of society and future we wish to have. Grassroot Diplomat has sought to meet the challenges facing societies head on.


In light of post-referendum decision to leave the EU and with the official triggering of Article 50 to start the two-year process, the team has been working towards producing a Brexit Diplomatic Handbook, a guide to navigate the tensions and increasing divisions within society. We are currently looking for volunteer researchers among our members to join the team to assist on handbook. If you think this is you, please send your credentials to info@grassrootdiplomat.org.


Grassroot Diplomat has seen some exciting new developments with the start of the year.  The launch of the new podcast “Grassroot Diplomat Talks” will engage new audiences on the modern practices of diplomacy, delivering a human face of Grassroot Diplomat’s work with dynamic interviews from the Executives, Board and Advisory Council. Check out the website for recent podcasts, including ‘Self-Development in Diplomacy and International Relations' (March release) and ‘Limitations to Joining the Diplomatic Foreign Service’ (February release.) The podcasts are available on iTunes and other podcast platforms 16th of every month.


The team has also been busy updating the Diplomatic Development Training that is accompanied by a 50-page workbook for clients to record their self-development during the programme. The training has already received some positive testimonials by clients across the globe. In the same theme of self-development, Executive Director, Talyn Rahman-Figueroa, has completed a comprehensive new book called “Diplomatic Planner” – a 12 month workbook that focuses on practical self-development exercises for international relations practitioners. It is currently going through a test phase before its release to the public. 


The uncertainty in the diplomatic core and political arena on the government’s direction on Brexit has meant that the fifth annual Grassroot Diplomat Awards has been postponed to 2018. The Awards will be replaced with an innovative and exciting event in October involving the diplomatic corps and their national heritage, with more details coming soon!


The Board is always looks to include new talent and expertise to the table are looking for new members. If you feel that you have valuable skills and knowledge beneficial to the Board, please get in touch with the team.

With so much work in the pipeline, Grassroot Diplomat stands ready to deliver new and creative ways to ensure diplomacy remains relevant to meet the challenges of civil society and the unpredictability of world events. It requires renewed energy, dynamic thinking and leadership to tackle divisive and difficult issues that we face. Talyn and her team continue to strive for better ways to open dialogue, build more resilient communities and optimistic outlooks for the future. Keep updated with our latest news and developments as the team continues to expand its programmes through the year.


Vanessa Thevathasan
Non-Executive Director, Grassroot Diplomat