Geneva Science and Diplomacy Anticipator

Solution idea:
Global Curriculum for Science and Diplomacy (GCSD)

Towards a globally accepted training framework for leaders in today’s world accelerated by science and technology

The accelerating pace of emerging science and technologies is profoundly transforming who we are as human beings, how we form and govern societies, how we inhabit our planet and envisage our place in the universe, setting new challenges for multilateralism and defining the need for anticipatory leadership.

To respond to this, GESDA’s Solution idea on anticipatory science diplomacy capacity building announced at the GESDA 2023 Summit has the objective to bring together current and future decision makers from various professional and geographical horizons and empower them to use the great acceleration of science for the benefit of all.

In order to do so, GESDA has been gathering intelligence for the development of a global training framework by identifying on the one hand the multilateral actors’ competence needs and gaps in the current training offerings, and on the other testing innovative teaching methodologies and delivery mechanisms.

A demonstrator training program was launched by GESDA Foundation at the end of 2021 in collaboration with nearly twenty partners from Geneva, Switzerland and around the world. Since its first edition in 2022, this demonstrator called Geneva Science Diplomacy Week has attracted 500 applications from all regions of the world for 90 participant slots. This year the Geneva Science Diplomacy Week takes place from 10 to 14 June.

As the operational hub of the international system, Geneva’s proximity to key multilateral actors – UN organizations, governments, multinational corporations – provides the perfect enabling environment for GESDA and its partners to work on scaling up the lessons learned from its demonstrator project toward the development of a globally accepted framework enabling training entities to meet the demands of the employers shaping international cooperation. 


The phases of the project

The design and incubation phase of the GCSD is taking place in 2024-2027.

In a first step, a training framework needs to be designed by defining the knowledge (core concepts of anticipation, science diplomacy, basics of science, basics of international relations, economics, etc.), skills (anticipatory situation room methodology, honest brokering, anticipation, negotiation, etc.) and attitudes (dealing with different mindsets, etc.) to act effectively in the face of rapid scientific advances.  

In parallel, the training framework will need to be experimented through prototypes of curricula for executive training targeting the following groups: 

  • Academic world: Future university presidents and C-suite of universities (provosts, vice presidents, deans, high level officers working with them) and leading faculty both from the public and private sectors.
  • Political and diplomatic world: Future ministers, future high officials such as heads of diplomatic missions or directors of international organizations.
  • Impact world: Future board members, CEOs, CTOs of companies, directors of foundations or NGOs.
  • Individual citizens world: Developers and consumers of technologies from all over the world willing to expand their know-how and employability in a global world irrespective of their geographies.

By 2027, the Global Curriculum for Science and Diplomacy (GCSD) is expected to create a new field of studies and secure a broad acceptance of a new training framework as a useful guideline for effective and actionable science and diplomacy as well as anticipatory leadership training. Best practices will be developed by a broad coalition of key training providers, employers, and potential users. GCSD’s success will ultimately be measured by the increased quality and quantity of available training offerings and the number of professionals upskilled and able to apply the new competencies in their working environment.

GESDA’s long-term goal is to anchor the GCSD structure in a globally renowned institution or coalition of institutions acting as a host and coordinating the work of the like-minded training institutions throughout the globe while taking the responsibility for maintaining the training framework, assess its impact and ensure its quality. This coalition will encompass universities, diplomatic schools, business schools, governments, international organizations, multinational companies, practitioners, etc. to ensure legitimacy, global uptake, and evolution towards an accepted standard for science diplomacy training for effective multilateral cooperation of all sorts.  

By making sure leaders around the world can have easy access to training providing them with the needed competences on anticipatory science and diplomacy, we enable them to take decisions that will guide us towards an effective multilateralism.