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Will AI take over diplomatic reporting? (WebDebate #56)

Reports are the lifeblood of diplomacy. Every day, thousands of reports, also called diplomatic cables, are prepared by diplomats worldwide. 

With the advance of AI, in particular the release of ChatGPT, we need to wonder: Will AI take over diplomatic reporting? 

Tuesday, 7th February, 14:00 UTC
(09:00 EDT | 15:00 CEST | 19:30 IST) 


Diplomatic reports summarise meetings and negotiations, analyse situations and identify trends, and propose further actions. In the history of diplomacy, the first embassy (Milan to Florence in 1450) and the first Ministry of Foreign Affairs (France in 1626) were established to serve as archives of diplomatic reports. In addition to internal diplomatic reports, reports are prepared for international organisations as records of the implementation of treaties, Agenda 2030, and other global initiatives. 

ChatGPT gave us a glimpse of the power of AI for drafting texts. The whole process of reporting – from a transcription of voice recordings to the summarising of text, to answering specific questions – can be performed by the AI. Off-the-shelf AI such as ChatGPT is not reliable yet. But, AI, which will be trained in the language and way of thinking of diplomats, can mimic a considerable part of diplomatic reporting. As we saw from ChatGPT, diplomats may have to develop new skills of ‘prompting’ in order to provide AI with a cognitive framework for drafting and summarising. 

How will AI affect diplomatic reporting? What will be the impact on the diplomatic profession? What would be a human role in ‘automated diplomatic reporting ’? 

Join diplomats, academics, and AI experts for an informed discussion on the current level of technology and future trends. You will also have a chance to hear about Diplo’s cutting-edge research on apps and tools for AI and diplomacy.


Contributors:

Jovan Kurbalija, Director of DiploFoundation and Head of Geneva

Ambassador Umej Bhatia, Singapore’s ambassador to the UN in Geneva

Irena Zubcevic, Senior Advisor to the Croatian Permanent Mission to the UN in New York

Liz Galvez, former British senior diplomat, and current Diplo senior fellow and lecturer

Diplo’s AI and Data Team

Moderator: 

Dr Katharina E. Höne (Director of Research, Diplo)

About our WebDebates

Our WebDebates on the future of diplomacy are live-streamed on the first Tuesday of every month. They are organised by Diplo within the framework of the International Forum on Diplomatic Training (IFDT). Learn more about our WebDebates series.