Networked Foreign Policy - Overview

  • Hierarchical leadership in foreign policy is being replaced by a dynamic network 
  • Leadership is changing and becoming more important; instead of central control, a more participatory design and a network with the right actors is important 
  • The study also offers insight outside the foreign policy context, as well as management with and within networks that play a central role


The world is becoming more digital and networked. This provides tremendous opportunities, but also creates a culture of growing complexity. What are the consequences of these changes for organizations active in the field of external policy? How can foreign policy interests be negotiated among a growing number of new stakeholders? And what are the tasks of leaders in order to make structural and cultural adjustments in foreign policy organizations? 

These questions are at the heart of the study conducted by LEAD together with the Future of Diplomacy Project at the Harvard Kennedy School and the School of Public Policy at Central European University.

From July to October 2014, project partners attempted to address these questions by speaking to 25 German decision-makers in different sectors, including ambassadors, department heads in ministries and economic associations, foreign policy makers, leaders and executives from foundations and companies. In addition, the partners TLGG and complexium also carried out an analysis of social media (Twitter, Facebook, forums) to look at the consequences of digitalization on politics. The German-Turkish relations served as a case study.


The Idea Spreading


Event: Presentation of the study

Panel discussion with Douglas Alexander, Claude Brüderlein and Ben Scott, presented by Cathryn Clüver.

Get in touch!

Ben Sahlmüller | Projektmanager Research
+49 30 9210 285-14