From the rise of China to the wave of instability still sweeping across the Arab World, and from the crisis in the Euro-zone to the emerging effects of climate change, our world is undergoing radical change. New challenges are joining old and both a newly vibrant global civil society and new technological and media tools, are also offering up new ways of doing diplomacy. Britain must adapt to this new environment if it is not only to survive but thrive in the emerging world of the 21st century. In this major new volume, Douglas Alexander, Shadow Foreign Secretary, former Secretary of State for International Development and visiting fellow in Future Diplomacy at the Harvard Kennedy School, and Dr. Ian Kearns, Chief Executive of the European Leadership Network, bring together a group of world class thinkers, diplomats, visionaries and statesmen to review the major changes under way and to explore their implications for our foreign policy.
Divided into five main sections, the book first examines immediate challenges like Afghanistan and Iran, before going on to assess the emerging geo-political environment and the suitability of existing international institutions to respond to the wave of change. It considers global, even existential, challenges like climate change, nuclear proliferation and the fate of the world's poor and looks again at the long-standing issue of humanitarian intervention in the light of ongoing violations of human rights around the world. Each contributor to the volume reviews change, assesses consequences, and offers personal policy prescriptions in each of these areas. The book also re-thinks the nature of 21st century diplomacy, examining the ways in which power is not only being re-distributed but used in new and different ways. It examines the concept of power itself, the new roles being played by NGOs and by technology, and asks how the complex range of actors on the world stage today can be encouraged to work together to deliver the peaceful and prosperous future we seek.
It also examines how the UK fits into this picture and reviews the strengths and sources of influence the UK can still bring to bear.