Policy Press

Lessons in Diplomacy

Politics, Power and Parties

By Leigh Turner

Published

Sep 24, 2024

Page count

240 pages

ISBN

978-1447373926

Dimensions

216 x 240 mm

Imprint

Policy Press

Published

Sep 24, 2024

Page count

240 pages

ISBN

978-1447373940

Dimensions

216 x 240 mm

Imprint

Policy Press
Lessons in Diplomacy

Is a diplomat’s life really as glamorous as a royal visit, or as dramatic as a coup d’état in Turkey?

Leigh Turner is a former British ambassador who led posts in Ukraine, Turkey and Austria. In this witty globe-trotting adventure through one of the most intriguing careers a person can have, Leigh relates his interactions with royalty of both the aristocratic and celebrity kinds, and with brilliant and extraordinary people who bestowed valuable lessons. Offering astute reflections on Brexit, Russia’s war with Ukraine and the chaos of modern politics, he sheds new light on the intricacies of modern statecraft, including what we all can learn from a good diplomat or ambassador.

In this entertaining and accessible first-hand account, you’ll discover how diplomats really work with spies, how immunity allows killers to escape justice, how Russia broke up the Soviet Union and then nursed its resentment at the consequences -- and how to throw, and be invited to, a great cocktail party.

Leigh Turner is a former British ambassador who recently retired from the Foreign Office. Multilingual, he held diplomatic posts in Vienna, Moscow and Berlin, served as Ambassador to Ukraine, British Consul-General in Istanbul, Ambassador to Austria and UK Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Vienna, and Director of Overseas Territories in the FO. He has also written several political thrillers.

Prologue: diplomacy in flux

Introduction: how to become an ambassador

Chapter 1: How to survive a crisis

Chapter 2: How to stop terrorism?

Chapter 3: How to fail at geopolitical change: Brexit

Chapter 4: How (not) to introduce democracy

Chapter 5: How to understand Putin’s war on Ukraine

Chapter 6: How to grapple with the legacy of colonialism

Chapter 7: How to handle politicians

Chapter 8: How to learn from diplomatic tradecraft

Chapter 9: How to drink wine and know things

Chapter 10: How to know people

Chapter 11: How to be interrogated

Chapter 12: How to keep your feet on the ground

Chapter 13: How to craft a career

Chapter 14: How to be an ambassador

Chapter 15: How to make diplomacy reflect our changing world

Epilogue: top tips for diplomats and ambassadors