Abstract

New technology, new actors, new issues and the breakdown of distinctions between foreign and domestic policy have undermined diplomats' monopoly over international relations. Foreign services have been overtaken by these changes and are no longer up to the challenges of defending and promoting national interests in the twenty-first century. They need radical reform of their structures, culture, recruitment and training. Above all, they need to reinforce their capacity for medium- and long-term geopolitical analysis and strategic thinking and introduce greater flexibility into their operations. Nevertheless, an effective foreign service is ever more essential to a country's security and economic and social welfare. Governments should give higher priority to foreign service reform. This article suggests specific areas to consider.

In: The Hague Journal of Diplomacy
In The Geopolitics of Cyberspace: A Diplomatic Perspective, Riordan explores the extent to which the key concepts of classical and critical Geopolitics can be applied to cyberspace, and how they might explain the behaviour of key state and non-state actors. Case studies seek to apply both kinds of geopolitical analysis to the US, Russia, China, the EU and internet companies, discussing what it can tell us about their past and future behaviour. Riordan then explores the implications for both the theory and, especially, the practice of diplomacy in relationship to cyberspace. He argues that foreign ministries and diplomatic services need to reform both their culture and structures to engage successfully with the challenges posed by cyberspace. Underlying the article is an attempt to rescue both diplomacy and geopolitics from popular usages that risk emptying both concepts of meaning.

Abstract

The Internet has been seen as the harbinger of a world without borders or sovereignty. But states have recently reemerged in Cyberspace, asserting sovereignty or using it to pursue conflict with rivals. This article explores the geopolitics of Cyberspace. It argues that critical geopolitical concepts like geopolitical fields, culture and conditions can offer insights into the behaviour of actors in Cyberspace. The argument is explored through case studies of the US, Russia and China. The article goes beyond traditional nation states to apply similar analysis to the European Union and Internet companies. It concludes that both classical and critical geopolitics can make valuable contributions to the analysis of Cyberspace, and the behaviour of both state and non-state actors. Diplomacy has a crucial role in managing geopolitical conflicts in Cyberspace. But diplomats need to rethink their engagement and reform the structures and cultures in which they operate.

In: Brill Research Perspectives in Diplomacy and Foreign Policy

Abstract

The Internet has been seen as the harbinger of a world without borders or sovereignty. But states have recently reemerged in Cyberspace, asserting sovereignty or using it to pursue conflict with rivals. This article explores the geopolitics of Cyberspace. It argues that critical geopolitical concepts like geopolitical fields, culture and conditions can offer insights into the behaviour of actors in Cyberspace. The argument is explored through case studies of the US, Russia and China. The article goes beyond traditional nation states to apply similar analysis to the European Union and Internet companies. It concludes that both classical and critical geopolitics can make valuable contributions to the analysis of Cyberspace, and the behaviour of both state and non-state actors. Diplomacy has a crucial role in managing geopolitical conflicts in Cyberspace. But diplomats need to rethink their engagement and reform the structures and cultures in which they operate.

In: The Geopolitics of Cyberspace
In: The Hague Journal of Diplomacy