'Misunderstandings can have unfortunate consequences. You’ve taken umbrage at an insult heard in a dinner queue, when you later learn you have misheard what was said. We’ve been piqued at the words of another before realising - too late – the gossip referred to someone else.
But when such misunderstandings are scaled up to the level of nations who can do real damage to each other – by withholding trade, imposing sanctions or using weapons – the need for clarity of communication is critical. So the insights of Sir Steven Gomersall as an ex-Diplomat were invaluable to help us appreciate the lengths our Civil Servants go to stopping such animosities; or better still, making the world a safer place.
With more than 30 years experience as Ambassador to Japan and now CEO for Hitachi in Europe, his talk Oiling the Wheels of Nations: What is Diplomacy Good For? lifted the lid on what happens behind the impenetrable doors of International Affairs. Whilst there is clearly a bit more to Diplomacy than trotting out clichés and doing small talk over canapés, the core message was for nations was as clear as it is for us as individuals: that nations should speak peace to other nations.'
'Thank you so much for inviting me to talk to your Sixth Form students about the profession of diplomacy. It was a great pleasure to talk to such an attentive group, and hear some of their responses to the changes in our international environment. The studious and orderly atmosphere and wonderful facilities of the School left a great impression.'
Sir Steven Gomersall