By Barend ter Haar
Thirty years ago, four different institutes in the field of international relations merged to form a new institute: Clingendael. The scope of Clingendael, both a think-tank and a diplomatic academy, working both for the Dutch and the international market, has remained very broad ever since.
Clingendael ’s diplomatic academy provides training for incoming Dutch diplomats, the so-called ‘Klasje’, and for diplomats from all over the world, including the Middle East, North Africa, South-Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, Iraq and Pakistan. The Clingendael Academy maintains special cooperation and partnership agreements with Indonesia and South Africa, spanning multiple generations of diplomats.
The Academy furthermore provides training for officers of other ministries, personnel of the armed forces and employees of NGO’s and the private sector.
Most of Clingendael ’s research fellows also work both for a Dutch and for an international audience. On the national scene, Clingendael publishes the Strategic Monitor and actively stimulates a well-informed debate about Dutch foreign policy, by organising debates, providing comments to the Dutch media and by publishing brief comments. Special emphasis is given to the national debate about the EU, inter alia by means of the website: www.euforum.nl.
On the European and international scene, the focus of Clingendael ´s research is mainly directed at energy, security, Europe, diplomacy, Asia and global governance. The results of this research can be found on www.clingendael.nl.
The special interest of Clingendael in diplomacy and international negotiations is illustrated by its central role in publishing The Hague Journal of Diplomacy and in the Processes of International Negotiation (PIN) network.
Among the subjects on Clingendael ‘s current agenda are the coming Nuclear Security Summit, the future of diplomacy and the reorganisation of the Dutch armed forces.
Special mention deserve the Clingendael International Energy Programme (CIEP), a separate entity which conducts research on the international energy markets, and the Conflict Research Unit (CRU) that assists with its research the engagement of governments and NGO’s in fragile and conflict situations.
The Institute furthermore publishes the only Dutch language magazine on international relations, the Internationale Spectator and houses the secretariat of the Dutch Association for International Affairs (NGIZ).
Clingendael receives a subsidy from the Netherlands government, but it is academically independent. Located in an attractive park, between a Japanese garden and a classic Dutch garden, it is the ideal location for conferences and training sessions.
Clingendael: a national institute and a global academy
By Barend ter Haar