16-20 May 2022
A field visit and immersion program in International Geneva
for current and future science and diplomacy leaders
The global call for expressions of interest to participate in the inaugural Immersion Program, held 16-20 May 2022 in Geneva, was opened in January 2022.
Hosted in the historic Palais des Nations – the United Nations Headquarters in Geneva – and organized in partnership with the key international agencies, diplomatic missions, academic institutions, global NGOs and technology leaders shaping the future of multilateralism, the Science & Diplomacy Week provided an unparalleled immersion, learning and networking experience into the Science and Diplomacy ecosystem of International Geneva.
Join the Science & Diplomacy Week
if you want to…
Understand the growing importance of anticipatory science diplomacy as an emerging discipline that unites science with world affairs.
Learn about the most signiﬁcant science breakthroughs in ﬁve, 10, and 25 years and their impact on people, the society and the planet.
Jointly devise with science and policy leaders from around the world the future diplomatic envelopes needed to embrace science advances for the greatest beneﬁt of humanity, while minimizing their risks and undesirable consequences.
Learn to apply cutting-edge anticipation methodologies, scientific insights and quantitative methods to diplomatic practices for improving negotiation processes, international conflict resolution and global governance for responding to global challenges.
Get an insider view of International Geneva as the global hub of Science and Diplomacy for multilateralism and network with its key actors.
Participate in a “Multilateralism Lab” with simulations and scenarios to help shape the future of science diplomacy.
Who is it
- sScientists and academics from natural and social sciences with expertise and interest in GESDA’s thematic focus areas (Advanced AI and the Quantum Revolution, Human Augmentation, Eco-Regeneration and Geo-Engineering, Science & Diplomacy).
- National diplomats/policymakers / legislators interested in the interface between science and policy.
- Representatives from international organizations working on multilateral frameworks for frontier tech issues.
- Representatives from the private sector developing frontier technologies/deep tech startups and companies.
- Representatives from the civil society/NGO involved in advocacy efforts around agenda topics.
The inaugural cohort counted approximately 30 participants, ensuring a good mix of disciplines and sectors, as well as gender and geographical balance. Priority was given to applicants in mid-career positions in order to empower them to become actors of change within their ecosystem.
Photos credits: UNITAR, CERN
- Interactive workshops, simulation exercises and negotiations based on GESDA’s newly introduced Science Breakthrough Radar® and anticipatory “Situation Room” methodology, on topics ranging from carbon capture and climate-altering technologies, to neuro rights, gene editing, AI and quantum technologies.
- Expert dialogues, institutional visits and receptions with members of the Coalition and other partners on key anticipatory science and diplomacy topics.
- Public activities and events to stimulate engagement and reflection outside the disciplinary expert circles.
- Private visits to key institutions and high-level networking opportunities with Geneva, Swiss and International actors.
- Skills building and career development sessions to foster the next generation of ‘multilingual’ scientists and diplomats.
Facilitated by GESDA, the Science & Diplomacy Week brings together new and existing training and capacity building offerings from the programme partners. Please visit the dedicated websites of the coalition partners and participating institutions for more information:
CERN – European Organisation for Nuclear Research https://home.cern/
Geneva Center for Security Policy https://www.gcsp.ch/
Geneva Science Diplomacy Anticipator (GESDA) https://gesda.global/
Geneva Science Policy Interface https://gspi.ch/
The International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA) https://www.ingsa.org/
Inter-Parliamentary Union https://www.ipu.org/
Lab for Science in Diplomacy (ETHZ-UNIGE)
SDG Lab https://www.sdglab.ch/
United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) https://unitar.org/
University of Zurich https://www.uzh.ch/
International Science Council (ISC) https://council.science/
Participants profiles and focus areas
The Immersion Program will bring together current and future leaders from the diplomatic and scientific communities, as well as from industry, the NGOs and the civil society, to foster a common understanding of each other’s perspectives and to work together on devising the diplomatic envelopes needed to maximize beneficial uses of frontier technologies for all, while minimizing their risks.
Applications are expected from individuals and institutional representatives working at or interested in the interface of science and diplomacy in four focus areas:
- Advanced artificial intelligence and the quantum revolution
- Global health and human augmentation
- Climate change, decarbonization and the future of the global commons
- Anticipatory science diplomacy tools and new diplomatic methods
All participants in the program are experts in their own fields, and will simultaneously act as trainees and trainers, with ample opportunities for peer exchange, mutual learning and expert input.
What is Science & Diplomacy?
The first two decades of the 21st century saw science diplomacy gain traction on the global agenda. The 2010 report by the Royal Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) titled New Frontiers in Science Diplomacy gave science diplomacy its first formal definition and established a three-pillar taxonomy:
1. science for diplomacy (science as a soft power tool to improve international relations),
2. science in diplomacy (using scientific evidence to inform foreign policy),
3. diplomacy for science (using diplomacy to support international scientific collaboration).
Today, science diplomacy is facing a new challenge to adapt to both the speed of scientific progress and shifts in international relations, balancing the three following factors:
1. the unprecedented pace of scientific and technological progress,
2. the urgency with which global challenges must be addressed and
3. the complexity of global geopolitics.
All nationalities are welcome to apply. Invitation letters to accompany visa requests to travel to Switzerland will be issued by UNITAR to participants upon request