Independent Diplomat holds itself and the groups it works with to strict ethical standards. It requires its beneficiaries to be committed to democracy, human rights and the rule of law.
ID undertakes significant due diligence before agreeing to work with a prospective beneficiary. This three-stage process involves: (i) background research; (ii) consultation with at least two reputable organisations with local knowledge of the situation and/or the prospective beneficiary (e.g. an international organisation, an international NGO, a trusted government); and (iii) detailed discussion with ID’s Advisory Council, which includes distinguished former diplomats and international relations experts.
ID’s assessment of prospective beneficiary involves a determination of:
- Whether the prospective beneficiary is involved in a situation at risk of escalating to conflict or returning to conflict;
- Whether ID’s assistance would help reduce the likelihood of an escalation or return to conflict;
- Whether the prospective beneficiary is, in some way, at a disadvantage in international diplomacy (in terms of lack of resources and/or expertise and/or experience and/or power);
- Whether the prospective beneficiary actively wants and can benefit from ID’s help, and whether it has the capacity to engage with and absorb the advice provided ;
- Whether there is any conflict of interest with ID’s existing operations;
- Whether the prospective beneficiary meets ID’s ethical criteria, which are that the beneficiary must be committed to:
- Observance of international law;
- Respect for international institutions including the United Nations;
- Protection of human rights;
- The rule of law, including democratic and accountable government; and
- Refusal of support to those promoting or engaging in unlawful violence.
Once engaged, the advice that Independent Diplomat provides to its beneficiaries always reflects respect for international law, including international human rights law.
ID conducts periodic ethical reviews of its work with each beneficiary, and at its own discretion will suspend or terminate a relationship for any breaches of its ethical criteria.
ID’s key areas of expertise include:
- The United Nations, especially the UN Security Council and peacekeeping operations
- The European Union, including accession
- Self-determination, sovereignty and territorial integrity
- Public international law and international dispute settlement
- Human rights and international humanitarian law
- Climate change, energy and natural resources
- Law of the Sea, maritime boundaries and fisheries
- Foreign direct investment promotion
Tools and methods employed by the ID team to help its beneficiaries to achieve their diplomatic objectives include:
- Information gathering and analysis
- Tailored research
- Assistance with the preparation and conduct of negotiations
- Preparation of diplomatic communications, speeches, statements and press articles
- Management and coordination of high-level diplomatic visits, including at Head of State and Foreign Minister level
- Assistance with strengthening networks and relationships in key diplomatic centres