Apart from the already well-known RS/AAAS conceptualization seen in the previous topic, Flink & Schreiterer (2010) have proposed another substantive differentiation or typology to conceptualize science diplomacy. Deriving from an analysis of the concrete actions that state actors have shown, these authors distinguish between three strategic purposes to characterise different varieties of policies and strategies to promote international scientific cooperation and to enact science diplomacy:
Access: improvement of national innovation capacity and competitiveness by better benchmarking international research and development trends and policies, observing and seizing knowledge and technology markets elsewhere in the world as well as attracting talents and investments from abroad. Access-driven actions can be used to ease tensions between states, build trust, manage or prevent conflicts, or to be involved in extremely expensive “big science” projects that no country can afford to run alone, such as the International Space Station.
Promotion: marketing of a country’s achievements in the research and development landscape and raising interest in a country’s S&T, therefore improving its reputation. The main aim is the attraction of students, researchers and companies to build up national capacities, reputation and performance, stir innovations or enhance its innovative capacities, and lay grounds for international partnerships.
Influence: addressing the most explicit political and soft power aspect of science diplomacy, influencing other countries’ public opinion, decision-maker and political or economic leaders. Science and technology activities as a promising entry point for engaging citizens and civil society organisations worldwide. The universal values of science and a more rational approach in policy-making processes that will reinforce democracy, are both embedded in this policy goal. The main challenge here, as opposed to international science cooperation, is bringing together the world of science and diplomacy, teaming up professionals and different players with a set of particular strategic interests and global concerns.
Read more about this conceptual framework in the reference below: – Flink, Tim, and Ulrich Schreiterer (2010): “Science diplomacy at the intersection of S&T policies and foreign affairs: toward a typology of national approaches.” Science and Public Policy, 37(9), November 2010, pages 665–677 (Link).