To mark the end of Culture Month, an annual initiative that aims to enhance cultural awareness, soft power and tolerance, the Emirates Diplomatic Academy hosted Her Excellency Helen Clark, former Prime Minister of New Zealand and former Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme, for interactive sessions with the Academy’s students and faculty.
The Academy welcomed Her Excellency as a distinguished visiting fellow. The former head of state attended a special screening of the new documentary ‘My Year with Helen’ that follows her campaign to become UN Secretary-General, in addition to holding a lecture on 21st-century diplomacy, and joining EDA students for discussions on topics ranging from innovation to humanitarian action.
Speaking on the importance of cultural diplomacy, Her Excellency Helen Clark said: “With its multicultural demographics and visionary policies, the UAE has much to share with the world in the realm of culture and tolerance. The Emirates Diplomatic Academy offers an exemplary education model to its students. Through high-impact initiatives like Culture Month, it promotes the knowledge of other cultures and creates an open forum where views and ideas can be exchanged freely.”
Extending his gratitude to Her Excellency Helen Clark, His Excellency Bernardino León, Director General of EDA, said: “I am honoured to host Her Excellency Helen Clark and thank her for sharing her valuable expertise with our students. Our diplomats have a major role to play as they convey the UAE’s achievements to the world. Through our innovative and versatile teaching approach, we ensure our students become true cultural ambassadors for the UAE on the global stage.”
Serving as a platform for intercultural exchange, Culture Month hosted several distinguished speakers and high-level sessions underlining the importance of culture in diplomacy as well as the role diplomats play in promoting cultural understanding.
Carefully crafted to reinforce the UAE’s competitive advantage in the global political arena, EDA’s education model interlinks academic courses and practical experience with research activities that focus on the specific context of the UAE and the wider Middle East region.