Nurturing the EU Science Diplomacy Community: The Launch of a EU Science Diplomacy Alliance for Addressing Global Challenges

S4D4C’s approach to science diplomacy promotes a multi-stakeholder endeavor and searches to nurture a European science diplomacy community where scientists, scholars, innovators, diplomats, policy-makers, and other practitioners have the opportunity to interact for the benefit of EU science diplomacy.

This report, which has been developed by S4D4C consortium members Ana Elorza, Lorenzo Melchor and Izaskun Lacunza from the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) with contributions from partners and stakeholders, identifies and highlights different types of science diplomacy stakeholders (governmental, intergovernmental and supranational, research and academic, from private sector and civil society) and maps the currently existing science diplomacy networks (at the subnational, national, sub-global, and global levels). In profiling science diplomacy stakeholders and networks, our aims are to showcase the different realities of science diplomats, bring the abstract concept of “science diplomacy” to life, and inspire scientists, researchers, innovators and diplomats to build from all of these models and apply them to different challenges or cultural contexts.

Nurturing this community and developing new talent at the interface of science and diplomacy might be the path to develop new ideas and models to better address existing and emerging social challenges in the EU. It is a unique opportunity, at a strategic level, for improving the science diplomacy European system.

For this report, we set out to map different types of stakeholders:

types, Figure 1, see report

see report, page 7

First, we look at different types of science diplomacy stakeholders, their interests and challenges and then at different types of science diplomacy networks which operate on subnational, national, sub-global and global level and either consist of different stakeholders from the same “category” (mono-stakeholder networks) such as bringing together ministries from different countries in a common network, or are composed of stakeholders from different types e.g. along the triple or quadruple helix, i.e. bringing together government, the private sector, academia and civil society organisations. The report also includes Factsheets about several major science diplomacy networks (learn more about initiatives such as the Science and Technology Diplomatic Circle in Boston, the German Academic International Network (GAIN), the European Diasporas Network in USA, the Foreign Ministries S&T Advice Network (FMSTAN) and many more.

levels, see report

see report, page 13

After setting out this approach, we develop recommendations to catalyse science diplomacy networks for addressing global challenges. For that purpose, we recommend e.g. to launch of a European Union Science, Technology and Innovation Diplomacy Alliance to address global and societal challenges as an interface platform in charge of fostering integration of science diplomacy practices in the EU. This EU Science Diplomacy Alliance will for example facilitate the set-up of a framework and provide training, institutional capacity building and coordinate funding, but it is up to the thriving science and innovation diplomacy community and the networks to put these goals into practice and provide innovative contributions to be developed in every area, focused on different societal challenges. This network will allow the EU to enhance its leadership in science diplomacy as an evolving concept, fostering in a systematic and reinforced way science diplomacy mechanisms to address global challenges.

Based on the work on the S4D4C project, this report and the collaboration with our sister projects EL-CSID and InsSciDE, we are undertaking concrete steps to launch this Alliance. More information about this will be available as of April 2021 at

You can access the report here: Nurturing the EU Science Diplomacy Community_EU SD Alliance

Please cite as: Elorza, A., Melchor, L., and Lacunza I. (2021): Nurturing the EU Science Diplomacy Community: The Launch of a EU Science Diplomacy Alliance for Addressing Global Challenges. Report, S4D4C.

S4D4C Team

Posted by S4D4C Team