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Elena Arlyapova, Elena Ponomareva

Virtual Embassy: New Technologies of Representation and Influence (Rethinking the American Experience)

2023. Vol. 18. No. 3. P. 32–47 [issue contents]

This article analyzes the American experience of creating and operating a virtual embassy in Iran. We consider theissue through the prism of the development of new information technologies and their applicability in the fields offoreign policy and diplomacy. In the Russian expert environment, this topic has not received due attention and reflection,although it could become an independent direction in academic study. Most importantly, the virtual embassycould offer a quick and relatively inexpensive solution to very specific challenges—both on a temporary and permanentbasis—in the practical part of current foreign policy.For Russia, the experience of implementing and managing such a technological unit could be applied in severaldifferent areas, united by the impossibility or difficulty of carrying out activities through traditional diplomaticchannels in a particular political and geographical area. One of the most suitable locations for the application of suchefforts is the polity of Kosovo, where the work of the Russian diplomatic mission is not being carried out for formalreasons that are understandable but lag behind the rapidly changing conditions of international life. As a result,there is a risk that future work in the region will need to start from scratch or even make up lost ground. But this isjust one, and the most obvious, example of the need to virtualize a diplomatic mission. The current crisis has revealedthe contours of much larger areas that are now inaccessible to Moscowʼs traditional diplomatic activity but requireconstant attention and systematic work. An alternative could be a virtual space—as a launching pad for dialogue andthen transformed into complementary and reinforcing tools of presence and influence. The successful experience ofRussian media abroad speaks for the high potential and good chances of these new directions.

This article was submitted 27.07.2023

Citation: Arlyapova E., Ponomareva E. (2023) Virtual Embassy: New Technologies of Representation and Influence(Rethinking the American Experience). International Organisations Research Journal, vol. 18, no 3, pp. 32–47 (inEnglish).
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