Virginie Mamadouh – Para- diplomacy: the (transnational) relations between cities, regions and other sub-state political entities



Event Date: 8 – 9 November  2013
Unrecognised Nations and Peoples Organisation
Laan van Meerdervoort 70
2517 AN The Hague
The Netherlands

Alternative Cultures of Diplomacy

Part of the Diplomatic Cultures Research Network (AH/J013900/1)

Professor  Virginie MamadouhPara- diplomacy: the (transnational) relations between cities, regions and other sub-state political entities

One of the key characteristics of the modern territorial state system has been the concentration of international relations in the hands of the political centre of the state, but with the recent globalization processes, it became impossible to ignore that sub-state political entities like cities and regions also develop their own networks of relations with counterparts abroad. The foreign policy of sub-state political entities is often labelled “paradiplomacy” to stress their resemblance and their relation (of complementarity or sometimes competition) with the diplomatic activities of the central state. The paper reviews the main features, motives and geographical patterns of the diplomacy of sub-state political entities and more specifically cities. It considers the role of twinning programmes in the national reconciliation policies that followed World War II. Moreover it will analyse the importance of city to city relations in the process of Europeanization under the aegis of the European Community and later the European Union. Finally it will zoom in on the case of The Hague, as the political centre though not the capital of The Netherlands and as “the legal capital of the world” and venue of the first World Conference on City Diplomacy.

Professor  Virginie Mamadouhis an Associate Professor of Political and Cultural Geography at the University of Amsterdam,  the  Netherlands.  Her  research  interests  pertain  to  urban  questions,  geopolitics,  new  media;  transnationalism, migration and territorial identities, European integration, and multilingualism. She has published recently in  Progress in Human Geography,  Political  Geography,  Eurasian  Geography  and  Economics,  Geopolitics,    Environment  and  Planning  D,  l’Espace  politique,Hérodote, and in The Ashgate Research Companion to Critical Geopolitics (2013). She edited (with John Agnew) Politics. Critical Essays in Human Geography. (2008  Aldershot: Ashgate) and (with Martin de Jong and Konstantino Lalenis)  The theory and practice of institutional  transplantation;  Experiences  with  the  transfer  of  policy  institutions   (2002  Dordrecht:  Kluwer).  Some  of  these contributions on diplomatic practices and urban political networks, such as the entry on The geography of diplomacy in Robert Denemark’s multivolume  International Studies Encyclopedia  (2010), have been written in close co-operation with Herman van der Wusten and that applies also to the paper for this workshop.





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