Abu Dhabi: As part of its dynamic diplomatic dialogues, the Anwar Gargash Diplomatic Academy (AGDA), the UAE’s leading diplomatic training centre, hosted distinguished diplomats in its latest panel discussion on Friday 27 May, titled ‘Mistakes and Missteps: Lessons we have learned.’

The panel discussion, which was moderated by His Excellency Nickolay Mladenov, Director General a.i. of AGDA, welcomed His Excellency Dr Shashi Tharoor, Indian Member of Parliament and former Under Secretary-General of the United Nations, and His Excellency Omar Saif Ghobash, Assistant Minister for Cultural Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC).

The session, which was held in partnership with the Abu Dhabi Book Fair, shed light on major and minor errors that diplomats may encounter during their careers. The discussion was held at AGDA’s campus and was attended by its students, academics, as well as experts within the field of diplomacy and foreign affairs.

His Excellency Nickolay Mladenov said: “As an Academy that plays an integral role in the UAE’s diplomatic ecosystem, we are committed to connecting our students with renowned diplomats – both locally and internationally to ensure they further their understanding on diplomacy and international relations.”

Speaking to the aspiring diplomats, His Excellency said: “It is essential that you learn from diplomatic successes, but also study situations where things have gone wrong, and where mistakes have been made”.

His Excellency Dr Shashi Tharoor, spoke to the audience about mistakes caused due to misunderstandings and misinterpretations: “Sometimes messages that you think are being conveyed clearly, get lost in translation. You must always overinterpret instructions with hindsight, because once a mistake has occurred, there is not a lot that one can gain by going back to it.”

His Excellency Omar Saif Ghobash told UAE’s aspiring diplomats to be true to their leadership: “I am always in favour of learning from one’s mistakes. There is a capacity to forgive mistakes and learn from them. But as diplomats, you must always remember that you are representing the State you hold the dignity of the State, rather than just your own.”


About the Anwar Gargash Diplomatic Academy (AGDA):

The Anwar Gargash Diplomatic Academy (AGDA) is a globally recognised diplomatic centre of excellence in Abu Dhabi, UAE. It delivers accredited academic programmes and high-impact executive training to develop future diplomats, as well as the government and business leaders of tomorrow. AGDA brings together an intellectual community from the world of diplomacy, academia and research. As a respected and evolving regional think tank, AGDA produces research that advances knowledge and capabilities relevant to the UAE’s foreign policy objectives. The Academy is a producer of leading resources, including indices and publications. Learn more at: http://agda.ac.ae/