Why and How Should Countries Engage in Tech Diplomacy? (WebDebate #60)

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Event description

The practice of tech diplomacy has been on the rise since the appointment of the first tech ambassador in 2017. Tech diplomacy includes new forms of diplomatic representation and new topics on the diplomatic agenda. It also reflects a changing geopolitical environment.

Tech diplomacy has brought about new venues for engagement and the involvement of new actors, and makes clear that countries and tech companies need to adopt new approaches to current digital policy issues.

DiploFoundation has published its report on Tech Diplomacy Practice in the San Francisco Bay Area, which is the most up-to-date mapping of tech diplomacy in the Bay Area. The report looks at specific exchanges between diplomatic representations and tech companies, and maps the existing benefits and challenges of tech diplomacy.

In WebDebate #60, we will:

  • Have a close look at the main findings of the report
  • Hear from various tech diplomacy practitioners from the Bay Area and Global South
  • Ask what benefits and challenges countries from the Global South face when aiming to engage in tech diplomacy
  • Investigate the role of tech diplomacy hubs beyond the Bay Area

Join us for an informed discussion on the emerging practice of tech diplomacy.

Tuesday, 6 June, 09:00 EDT (13:00 UTC | 15:00 CEST | 18:30 IST)


  • Ms Thato Morokong, Assistant Director, Africa Multilateral Cooperation, Department of Science and Innovation (DSI), South Africa
  • Ms Beatrice Ferrari, Director, International Affairs, Canton of Geneva
  • Mr Martin Rauchbauer, Former Austrian Tech Ambassador in Silicon Valley; Founder & Co-Director, Tech Diplomacy Network
  • Ms Pavlina Ittelson, Executive Director, Diplo US
  • Mr Yannick Heiniger, Consulate General of Switzerland in San Francisco
  • Dr Katharina Höne, Director of Research, DiploFoundation (moderator)

This event is organised in partnership with Swissnex in San Francisco and République et Canton de Genève.

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About our WebDebates

Our WebDebates on the future of diplomacy are live-streamed on the first Tuesday of every month. They are organised by Diplo within the framework of the International Forum on Diplomatic Training (IFDT). Learn more about our WebDebates series.

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