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The IPSA-Concordia Summer School in Applied Diplomacy

June 7 - 16, 2021


The IPSA-Concordia Summer School in Applied Diplomacy, the first IPSA Summer School to be held in Canada, is a ten-day program hosted virtually at Concordia University, in the heart of Montréal. Policy-oriented seminars will be complemented with a practical hands-on Diplomacy Lab, allowing the participants to work on case studies in teams. Through virtual field trips, participants will also explore practitioners’ points of view and have the opportunity to network with Montreal’s vibrant international community.

Montreal is home to over 60 International Organizations (IO), including IPSA and the only UN agency in Canada (the International Civil Aviation Organization) and has a very active consular corp. Furthermore, it is situated close to Ottawa, Canada’s capital, making it easy for ambassadors and global affairs experts to participate in the Summer School.

We invite all graduate students, young researchers and professionals to participate in the upcoming IPSA-Concordia Summer School in Applied Diplomacy.

Academic Leaders
Elizabeth Bloodgood (Concordia), Cameron Thies (Arizona State University), Kim Fontaine-Skronski (IPSA)

Educational program

The IPSA-Concordia Summer School in Applied Diplomacy course objective is to combine theory and practice by prominent scholars and diplomats, for the benefit of the participants from around the world.

Students will attend two (2) or three (3) classes per day on Zoom, mixing discussions on the theory and practice of diplomacy as it has changed over time, complemented with a practical hands-on Diplomacy Lab to collaborate on actual case studies as teams. The best Diplomacy Lab team will be invited to the next IPSA World Congress of Political Science to organize a panel and present their research.

Course Outline

  • Introduction: The Evolution of Diplomacy
  • Diplomacy in International Relations Theory
  • Traditional Diplomacy – States, International Organizations
  • Changing Diplomacy – Agencies, Non-State Actors
  • International Negotiations, Past and Present
  • Digital Diplomacy
  • International Law and Norms of Diplomacy
  • Scientific Diplomacy

The language of instruction is English but written assignments can be submitted in either French or English. In 2021, all activities will be conducted remotely via Zoom.

Educational Field Trips

A virtual field trip to Ottawa, the nation’s capital, will be organized to meet with Canadian government officials.

Students will also meet leaders of Montréal-based international organizations as well as participate in virtual networking events with diplomats and governmental officials.



Monday, June 7
AM – Introduction: Diplomacy in IR Theory
PM – Traditional Diplomacy (states and international organizations)
Opening ceremony keynote by a practitioner on the “Practice and challenges facing diplomats today”

Tuesday, June 8
AM – Changing Diplomacy (agencies, non-state actors)
PM – Municipal Diplomacy

Wednesday, June 9
AM – International Negotiations, Past and Present
PM 1- International Law and Norms of Diplomacy
PM 2– Introduction to the Diplomacy Lab (presentation of the simulation exercise on real-problem cases and creation of teams)

Thursday, June 10
AM – Digital Diplomacy
PM – Diplomacy Lab (first working session)

Friday, June 11
Virtual field trip to Global Affairs Canada
Meetings with governmental officials, including a visit at the Digital Inclusion Lab of the Office of Human Rights and Freedoms

Saturday, June 12
AM and PM – Diplomacy Lab (all day working session)

Monday, June 14
AM – Scientific diplomacy
PM – Diplomacy Lab (third working session)

Tuesday, June 15
AM – Diplomacy Lab (final session)
PM – Diplomacy Lab Team Presentations and Virtual Networking

Wednesday, June 16
AM— Virtual field trip to a Montreal-based International Organization
PM—Closing Ceremony Keynote “The Future of Diplomacy”

Thursday and Friday, June 17 and 18
Completion of final assignments


Details on cost breakdown can be found on the tuition and fees page.

How to apply

Applications sent in by April 15, 2021 will be considered for a fellowship. Financial assistance will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis.

If no financial support is needed, the final application deadline is April 15, 2021. Participants seeking to take the summer school for professional rather than academic recognition can apply until May 15, 2021 (space allowing).

In your application, please provide:

  • Your name, university, country, email address and telephone number.
  • A letter of intent (1000 words maximum), that responds to these questions:
    • Why are you interested in attending the IPSA-Concordia Summer School in Applied Diplomacy this summer?
    • What previous experience or preparation have you had in the area of diplomacy, both practical and academic?
    • Do you wish to be considered for financial aid? Please note that financial aid will be prioritized to graduate students taking the seminar for academic credit.

Deadline: Applications sent in by April 15, 2021, will be considered for fellowship and travel support. Financial assistance will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Final deadline: April 15, 2021.

The school is also available for young professionals working in governmental and non-governmental agencies.

For your application to be complete, you must submit the following in a single document (for example, a pdf):

  • your letter of intent answering the above questions
  • an unofficial transcript from your current program or most recent degree
    your CV
  • a reference letter from your academic or professional supervisor.

Submit your application package by email to

If you have not received a confirmation email for the receipt of your application, please reach out to

Contact Information and Questions

Questions about the IPSA-Concordia Summer School, and application processes, can be sent to

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