Digital diplomacy and social media networks: contemporary practices of innovation in foreign policy

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Introduction. The article is devoted to contemporary digital diplomacy, which is implemented within the framework of social networks. Unlike traditional diplomacydigital one operates in a different communicative space where blogs, electronic media and global social networks are the key communication channels. Using these tools allows digital diplomacyactors to influence events and communities in other countries. Methods and materials. Method of mixing qualitative and quantitative data, hashtag-analysis, comparative analysis of the social networks’ messages and accounts were able to understand the dynamics and interactions in social networks, engagement and possibilities of institutional and private actors in digital diplomacy. Analysis. In the 2000s foreign policy and public diplomacy began forming based on data on the mood of users of social networks and their preferences in politics. Thanks to this, digital diplomacy may well become one of the innovative tools for resolving modern global problems. Digital diplomacy, as a new method and the tool for implementing foreign policy, contributes to the effective functioning of departments and ministries of foreign affairs, their response to the needs of citizens, to emerging challenges and threats to state security, like a global epidemic or natural disasters. Using digital tools, it is possible to shape the norms of communication, interaction and decision-making by which diplomats perform their work, modifying the diplomatic process. Besides this digital diplomacy increases the attractiveness of the state in the eyes of the world community. Results. Based on a comparative analysis study of the content of social networks, it could be concluded that over almost a decade, from the 2010s to the 2020s, digital diplomacy has developed from a “soft power” mechanism to a method of information warfare and propaganda which involves artificial intelligence tools and big data. But this is predominantly characteristic of technologically developed countries. It is possible to conclude about future co-existence of traditional and digital diplomacies in a new hybrid variety. Authors’ contribution. In this article Liudmila M. Reshetnikova has contributed Introduction, Research Methods, Analysis and Results sections: identified risks and threats to digital diplomacy, analyzed the development of the soft power methods, identified features and tools of digital diplomacy. Irina M. Samokhina has contributed Analysis and Results sections: analyzed social networks and digital infrastructure for digital diplomacy and diplomatic activity, contemporary computer tools for learning about social networks.


Digital diplomacy, public diplomacy, social networks, innovative technology, foreign policy

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IDR: 149142908   |   DOI: 10.15688/jvolsu4.2023.2.17

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