Types of diplomacy in international relations

Types of diplomacy in international relations

Diplomacy is the profession, activity or skills international relations, typically by a country’s representatives abroad. These days, it has developed its productive forces to draw attention to social consciousness and legal norms. It is a real art that serves the purposes of individuals and their countries. There are several types of diplomacy, and we will review them in this article.

What is diplomacy?

It is believed that "diplomacy" comes from the Greek word "díploma", which in ancient Greece meant double plates with inscriptions written on them. They were issued to envoys as credentials and documents that confirmed their authority. The literal meaning of this word is "double". The use of the word ‘diplomacy’ started at the end of the XVI century, the first case was in England, in 1645.

What is diplomacy?

At the current stage of development of this art, the following definition seems most appropriate:

"Diplomacy is a principal activity of heads of states, governments and special bodies of external relations in implementation of goals, objectives of state's foreign policy, as well as protection of rights and interests of state abroad."

Types of diplomacy in international relations

Types (forms) of diplomacy

1. Politics of pacification

The essence of this type of diplomacy is pacification, that is, unwillingness to aggravate or incite contradictions that exist between countries. This kind presupposes various concessions for opposite sides on insignificant, unimportant issues. The most often seen examples of this diplomacy is that of England and France on the eve of World War II, when they tried to resist aggressive aspirations of Hitler.

2. Gunboat diplomacy

The essence of gunboat diplomacy consists in demonstrating strength to achieve foreign policy goals. This type got its name from the word "gunboat" - a small ship with a serious artillery armament.

The basis of gunboat diplomacy is full recognition of the legitimacy of using military force to achieve goals of foreign policy. Unlike classic policies with its complex games, all sorts of unions, principles and relations with those who are unlikely to inflict damage are simple and primitive.

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3. Dollar diplomacy

This type of diplomacy involves the use of economic methods (for example, loans) to achieve state's goals. It is the economic enslavement of the small states and submission to the domination of large foreign banks and the industrial companies. In this case, dollars literally act as bullets or weapons in the hands of diplomats.

Types of diplomacy

Dollars and bullets have both been used in the past. "Dollar diplomacy" pursues the goal to place small countries in political dependence on the country that provides economic assistance. Whenever any of such countries tried to work toward their independence, more rough means were usually put into effect.

4. Public diplomacy

Public diplomacy differs from traditional diplomacy, which is carried out by people with a special profession (diplomats, politicians). Public diplomacy is a means by which the government of one country tries to influence the society of another country. It is the ability to achieve goals through attractive offers, rather than bribery and coercion.

When we tell other states and societies of our values, we shouldn't do this in a short-term mode. Instruments of public diplomacy must be tailored to specific tasks. Foreign broadcasting is also suitable for foreign policies, and countries can arrange talks about their cultures, exhibitions and tours. To understand the culture of another country there is need to communicate with its inhabitants, for example, through education. Values are also spread through educational exchanges; this is how state branding is carried out.


The concept, coming from the world of marketing, asserts that every state is a brand that imposes a certain imprint on everything it offers (indicators of how powerful their brand is are the popularity of tourism, investment attractiveness, etc.). So, public diplomacy is not propaganda, it is much better than that.

5. People's diplomacy

People's diplomacy in a broad sense of the word means a historically continuous process of communication, mutual knowledge, influence and enrichment of cultures and people.

6. Intermediary diplomacy

Intermediary diplomacy is one of the means for peaceful settlement of disputes between states through a series of negotiations with the participation of a third state, on the basis of conditions advanced by it.

7. Economic diplomacy

Economic diplomacy is a specific area of modern diplomatic activity connected with the use of economic problems as an object, means of struggle, cooperation in international relations. It presupposes diplomatic service activities focused on increasing exports, attracting foreign investment and participation in work of international economic organizations, that is, actions focused on reaffirming a country's economic interest at international level.

international relations

Economic diplomacy, like diplomacy in general, is an integral organic part of foreign policy and international activities of a state. Foreign policy determines the goals, objectives of economic diplomacy.

ED's objectives:

  • Realization of national economic interests on world arena.
  • Protection of economic security through diplomatic methods.
  • Increase of country's international competitiveness.

ED targets:

  • Expansion of mutually beneficial economic cooperation.
  • Use of national resources either for foreign policy purposes or for gaining advantages through trade partners and strengthening a country's international competitiveness.
  • Gaining benefits, competitive advantages in the world market, ensuring national interests in a rapidly globalizing world.
  • Ensuring foreign economic security.
  • Prevention of threats to the balanced development of economy due to violation of foreign economic relations.
  • Providing a country with conditions for international economic cooperation, which ultimately contribute to raising the level and quality of life of its population.
  • Development of national foreign economic relations for the future.
  • Increasing level of economic development of the country.
  • Solving global problems.

8. Digital (electronic) diplomacy

It is the use of the Internet, information and communication technologies for solving diplomatic problems. In the framework of digital diplomacy, new media, social networks, blogs and similar global media platforms are used. The main goals of digital diplomacy are the promotion of foreign policy interests and information propaganda via the Internet.

diplomacy in international relations

In conclusion, it should be emphasized that the significance of diplomacy today has undoubtedly increased. Primarily, this is due to the fact that power solutions of international problems, despite their continued use, has become dangerous due to development of new types of weapons. In addition, restructuring of international relations connected with the processes of globalization and emergence of non-state actors on the world stage, challenges diplomacy to engage actively in the creation of a new world image. Any state wishing to succeed in the foreign policy arena must perfectly know and use all types of diplomacy described in this article.

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Source: Legit.ng

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