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Smart power. The role of education and science in public diplomacy


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If I was to choose my absolutely favourite topic of the course on public diplomacy, that would surely be education. There is no other field where coutnries can gain so much and punch above their weight. There is also no field that will have more impact on the future - of countries, of generations, of international relations, of labour markets, of economic development in various regions. Having students from many countries in my classes I could already see how things are changing regionally and globally - I could also see how different their education needs to be in comparison to my own experiences from less than a decade ago.

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Smart power. The role of education and science in public diplomacy

  1. 1. Smart power. The role of education and science in public diplomacy. Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Course on Public Diplomacy 2017
  2. 2. Why do countries fight for the brightest of the brightests?  The traditional factors building the power of states (i.e. economy and military strength) are increasingly interlinked with the level of science, R&D, technology and the level of education; examples: Banking systems require multidimensional thinking (watch The Big Short!) Building advanced helicopters, drones, tanks requires the best of the best technologies Building a modern diplomatic service requires a new, global education Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska
  3. 3. The technological revolution = the jobs revolution Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source:
  4. 4. Why do countries fight for the brightest of the brightests? MEGATRENDS: the fourth industrial – or rather technological revolution. Automatization Robots Artificial intelligence But: robots and AI will not replace everything. Processes requiring abstract, creative thinking and building various kinds of relations (mutual understanding!) will build workplaces for the best specialists in a variety of sectors. Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska
  5. 5. Why do countries fight for the brightest of the brightests?  The transition from an industry-based to a knowledge-based economy.  The increasing focus on knowledge generates new and intensifies already existing transnational interactions  Knowledge is more globalised than economy and therefore even less controllable  Institutions of higher learning produce national and international elites for the spheres of policitcs and business Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Anna Wojciuk
  6. 6. Why do countries fight for the brightest of the brightests?  In the era of the knowledge-based economy, higher education becomes more important:  As something power can draw upon (power as resource)  As a tool of foreign policy (power as influence) Cooperation oriented toward mutual benefits Competition for people, competition of systems Higher education as a part of international trade Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Anna Wojciuk
  7. 7. Cooperation oriented toward mutual benefits  Gaining prestige abroad, especially among the present or future elites of the country foreign students come from  Building mutual understanding between countries  Fostering international mobility of students  Not commercial – does not bring profits to the inviting country/institution; often subsidised by the inviting country/institution  Should aim at limiting the risk of brain drain Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Anna Wojciuk
  8. 8. Competition for people, competition of systems  When one country is gaining, the other is losing precious resources in relative terms (brain drain)  The braindrainers usualy search for people whose real capacities can be assessed in order to minimize the risk of investing in the wrong individuals  The other way: to encourage one’s own citizens who have studied abroad to come and start working in their home country (demographic crisis = a shrinking pool of talent)  Non-English speaking countries face difficulties and have to undertake special policies to be able to attract the best and brightest Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Anna Wojciuk
  9. 9. Higher education as a part of international trade  Export of knowledge becomes a part of international trade and higher education as a resource that produces wealth  The host country is not in any way subsidising foreign students – they are expected to fully cover tuition fees and the costs of living  The inviting country makes permanent immigration and employment difficult Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Anna Wojciuk
  10. 10. The Global Competitiveness Index framework Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: 2017/05FullReport/TheGlobalCompetitivenessReport2016- 2017_FINAL.pdf
  11. 11. Alumni of the Fulbright Program  Butrus Butrus Ghali, former UN SG  Javier Solana  Sylvia Plath  Umberto Eco  Włodzimierz Cimoszewicz, former PM  Marek Belka, former PM  Dariusz Rosati, former MFA  Grzegorz Kołodko, former MF Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska
  12. 12. EU Erasmus – growing mobility of students; growing support for the EU integration? Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: /erasmus-plus-facts-figures_en.pdf
  13. 13. EU Erasmus – growing mobility of students; growing support for the EU integration? Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: /erasmus-plus-facts-figures_en.pdf
  14. 14. EU Erasmus Mundus – EU public diplomacy towards the third countries Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: tion_culture/repository/educati on/library/statistics/erasmus- plus-facts-figures_en.pdf
  15. 15. International education hubs in Asia Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: developing-international- education-hubs-asia
  16. 16. International education hubs in Africa and the Middle East Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: http://www.higher- education- onal-education-hubs
  17. 17. Shanghai List But: there are totally 9 universities breaking into the Top 100 list in 2016, among which Tsinghua University (CN), Peking University (CN), Monash University (AU), National University of Singapore, Mayo Medical School (US) and the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center make their first appearance in the Top 100. This is also the first time for China and Singapore to have Top 100 universities in the world. Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: Ranking-of-World-Universities-2016-Press- Release.html
  18. 18. Student flows – tertiary education Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: world-student-housing-2014.pdf
  19. 19. Education diplomacy – a different perspective  To uphold education as a human right and essential for the realization of all other human rights  cross-cultural communication is key in this respect  Build consensus around the role and benefits of education in an increasingly complex world  Secure the responsibility of governments to provide education in their nations  Inform global leaders about the benefits of education  Enlighten educators and the public about how education contributes to peace, global security, and sustainability  Place education at the center of the global development agenda by bridging education to positive social, economic, health, and environmental outcomes Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source:
  20. 20. Malala Yousafzai  A Pakistani activist fighting and campaigning for education accross the globe, especially for the access to education for girls in the least developed and developing countries  The youngest laureate of the Peace Nobel Prize (2014 – 17 yrs old), also a laureate of the Sakharov Prize, Simone de Beauvior Prize, the Freedom Award – and many others  One of the most influential people in the world in 2013-2015 (Time magazine)  Founded the Malala Fund Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source:
  21. 21. Human Development Index Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source:
  22. 22. SDGs The Sustainable Development Goals were introduced by the General Assembly of the UN in 2015. Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska Source: development-goals/
  23. 23. Questions for discussion  In what sense is the education key in enhancing prosperity and security?  How do countries compete on the international educational market? Who are the other stakeholders?  Is education controversial as a public diplomacy dimension?  How can education enhance the positive image of a country and its brand? Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska
  24. 24. Literature ‣ Wojciuk Anna, International Power Dimensions of Higher Education in the Age of Knowledge, in: Stosunki Międzynarodowe – International Relations, No 1, vol. 49, Warsaw University 2014: content/uploads/2013/02/SM49-14-Wojciuk.pdf ‣ 2016-2017 Global Competitiveness Report, World Economic Forum: 2017/05FullReport/TheGlobalCompetitivenessReport2016- 2017_FINAL.pdf ‣ 2016 Human Development Index Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska
  25. 25. Thank you very much for your attention! Let’s stay in touch: a-rybka-iwa%C5%84ska-08856b133/ Katarzyna Rybka-Iwańska