Second Summer School

Modern Diplomacy: Across Levels, Actors and Tracks

The art of diplomacy has evolved. In an age where 280 characters from a world leader on Twitter can give a green light to foreign military action or move markets, there is no denying that the classic notions of diplomacy – backroom handshakes between decades-long counterparts with a tinge of cigar in the air – no longer reflect reality.

What has taken its place is a modern, multi-level and multi-faceted approach that encompasses all the tools of the international and interconnected global sphere. Effective diplomacy now relies on the ability of a government to engage on numerous fronts and in numerous departments.

This summer school, organised by UNU-CRIS and Vienna School of International Studies, in collaboration with Department of Foreign Affairs of Flanders, Ghent University and Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB), aims to present the most comprehensive, in-depth analysis of and training in modern diplomacy, gaining insights from practitioners, academics and policymakers at the forefront of their fields and operating at the highest levels, on the different facets of modern diplomacy and how they are being employed the world over to shape ideas, discussion and the world we live in.

How will the new methods of modern diplomacy change the art of it? Educate and prepare yourself for this new age of diplomacy at our Second Summer School.

This programme will be run virtually and sessions are from 10:00 - 16:00 CEST, with breaks included. 


Modules and Speakers

*speakers subject to change

Philippe De Lombaerde

Director ad interim, UNU-CRIS

Susanne Keppler-Schlesinger

Deputy Director, Diplomatische Akademie Wien – Vienna School of International Studies

Johan Verbeke

Former Belgian Permanent Representative to the United Nations

Former Belgian Ambassador to the United Kingdom and the United States of America

Andrew Cooper

Associate Research Fellow, UNU-CRIS 

Professor, University of Waterloo

Axel Buyse

General Representative of the Flemish Government to the European Union 

Thijs Van de Graaf

Professorial Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Associate Professor, Ghent University

Simon Schunz

Associate Research Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Professor, College of Europe

Veronika Hunt Šafránková

Head of Office, UN Environment Brussels Office 

Justine Bendel

Postdoctoral Fellow, Diplomatische Akademie Wien

Marc Franco

Former EU Ambassador to Egypt (2009-2012) and Russia (2004-2009) 

Emil Brix

Director, Diplomatische Akademie Wien - Vienna School of International Studies 

Christian Autengruber

Department for General International Cultural Policy and Cultural Programmes and Guidelines, Austrian Foreign Ministry 

Richard Higgott

Research Professor, Institute for European Studies / VUB

Emeritus Professor, University of Warwick

Karel De Gucht

Former European Commissioner for Trade

Former Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs

Glenn Rayp

Professorial Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Professor, Ghent University

Samuel Standaert

Professorial Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Assistant Professor, Ghent University

Linda Yueh

Chair of the LSE Economic Diplomacy Commission  
Fellow in Economics, St Edmund Hall, University of Oxford

Diana Weinberg

Guest Professor, Berlin School of Economics and Law

Mehari Taddele Maru

Part-time Professor, Migration Policy Centre, European University Institute

Lead Migration Expert and Chief Strategist, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) 

Ola Henrikson

Regional Director, IOM’s Regional Office for the EU, Norway and Switzerland 

Teresa Albano

Economic Affairs Officer at OSCE

Office of the Co-ordinator for Economic and Environmental Activities - OCEEA

Luk Van Langenhove

Founding Director, UNU-CRIS

Former Academic Director at the Institute for European Studies 

Michaela Told

Visiting Lecturer Global Studies Institute, University of Geneva

Former Executive Director, Global Health Centre, the Graduate Institute

Obijiofor Aginam

Principal Visiting Fellow, UNU-IIGH

Andreas Sami Prauhart

Founding Partner, Y-Motions International

Lecturer, Diplomatische Akademie Wien

Mona Ali Khalil

Founder and Director, MAK LAW International

Former Senior Legal Officer, UN Office of the Legal Counsel (UNOLC) in New York

Jovan Kurbalija

Executive Director of DiploFoundation

Head of the Geneva Internet Platform (GIP)

Florian Pennings

EU Government Affairs Manager - Cybersecurity, Microsoft

Jamal Shahin

Professorial Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Research Professor, Institute for European Studies / VUB

Maarit Palovirta

Director, Regulatory Affairs at ETNO (European Telecommunications Network Operators'​ Association)

André Barrinha

Senior Lecturer, University of Bath 

Clemens Mantl

Austrian Consul General in Milan, Italy

Former Director, Office of Science and Technology Austria  (OSTA) in Washington DC


Noé Cornago

Professor, University of the Basque Country

Alexander Segunin

Professor, St. Petersburg State University 

Horacio Rodriguez

Senior Manager, Operations & Impact at Scale, International Potato Center (CIP) 

Nahuel Oddone

Associate Research Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Head of Promotion and Exchange of Regional Social Policies Department, MERCOSUR 

Andrew Bradley

Associate Research Fellow, UNU-CRIS

Chief of Staff in the Office of the Secretary-General, ACP Group of States

Mona Ali Khalil

Founder and Director, MAK LAW International

Former Senior Legal Officer, UN Office of the Legal Counsel (UNOLC) in New York


Andrew Dunn


Policy and Communications Officer, UNU-CRIS



Applications are accepted on a rolling, first-come, first-served basis until 23:59 on 14 August. When the capped number of participant positions are filled, no more applications will be accepted. Applicants can expect to hear within two weeks of their application whether it has been accepted, rejected, or placed on the waiting list. 

The target audience for the Second Summer School is primarily those in the diplomatic service or with aspirations to do so, policymakers and academics, but students of exceptional promise are also encouraged to apply.

Applicants must hold at least a master's degree or be in the final year of their studies. There is no time limit as to when the degree was obtained. 

The summer school will be conducted in English, and as such participants are expected to have a good command of the English language


Applications (in English) must include:

  • A curriculum vitae
  • A motivation letter (max 2 pages)
  • Contact details of two referees


The tuition fee for the Second UNU-CRIS Summer School 2020 is €1000.

A non-refundable deposit of €250 is required within two weeks of acceptance.

Full payment must be made within four weeks of receiving the acceptance confirmation email.

Both the deposit and the remainder of the fee can be paid together. 

Students from Ghent University, the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, any United Nations University education programme and the College of Europe are entitled to a €150 discount on the full tuition fee. 

Evaluation & Certification

Participants will be asked to undertake a written evaluation, the format of which will be announced in the week prior to the commencement of the programme. 

These written assessments will be evaluated by academic personnel from both UNU-CRIS and the DA Vienna, with those adjudged to have satisfied the criteria awarded a certificate.  

Please note, no EC points are available through the UNU-CRIS Summer School.

Cancellation Policy

More than 45 days before commencement date: no cancellation charges - deposit lost
Between 45 and 30 days before commencement date: 50% cancellation charges
Between 30 and 15 days before commencement date: 75% cancellation charges
Less than 15 days before commencement date: 100% cancellation charges


All questions regarding the summer school should be directed to: with Andrew Dunn ( in CC.