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Knowledge Diplomacy Conference: Research into Practice, Practice into Research

Event information>




Senate House

Event type

Conference / Symposium

The second annual Knowledge Diplomacy conference focuses on bridging the gap between theoretical research and practical application, facilitating a dynamic exchange between academia and real-world practitioners. 


The events organised by the Knowledge Diplomacy project, University of London Institute in Paris aim to highlight how Knowledge Diplomacy plays a pivotal role in addressing global challenges. It can serve as the bridge between academic insights and practical applications. In a time where the world faces issues spanning from the rise of Artificial Intelligence, climate change, geopolitics, security, and economic transformation, understanding how Knowledge Diplomacy operates globally is becoming increasingly important. 

The theme of the second annual Knowledge Diplomacy conference is “Research into Practice, Practice into Research”. Building on the research conducted during two workshop sessions in 2022, the focus of the conference will be on the intersection of research and practical approaches suggests a dynamic exchange between theoretical knowledge and its real-world application. The kaleidoscope of theoretical considerations and practical applications of Knowledge Diplomacy ranges from taking insights and methodologies from academic research and translating them into actionable strategies and interventions to practical experiences, challenges, and successes in implementing strategies providing valuable feedback and data for refining or redirecting research inquiries. Researchers can learn from practitioners' experiences to ensure that their studies address relevant issues and have practical implications. Likewise, practitioners can benefit from evidence-based insights generated by research to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of their approaches. 

Event Description

The conference will feature panel discussions and interactive sessions on topics including how foreign policy making can be informed by Knowledge Diplomacy, the challenges that the disciplines, such as human rights and law and the humanities, are facing in a rapidly evolving world as well as case studies of practical applications and Artificial Intelligence.

The conference will provide an opportunity for interdisciplinary collaboration, where researchers and practitioners from different fields come together to exchange ideas, share perspectives, and co-create solutions to pressing societal issues.



Event followed by a reception at the Goethe Institute in South Kensington 
50 Princes Gate, Exhibition Rd, London SW7 2PH


  • 09:00: Introduction to day 2 / Housekeeping
  • 09:15: Panel 5: The Royal Society on Lessons in Science Diplomacy
  • 10:30: Break
  • 11:00: Roundtable: Knowledge Diplomacy & AI
  • 12:00: Closing plenary by Simon Marginson, Professor of Higher Education at the University of Oxford
  • 13:00: Closing remarks by Jo Fox on The Future of the Knowledge Diplomacy Project

Key Speakers

Sir Geoffrey John Mulgan CBE, Professor of Collective Intelligence, Public Policy and Social Innovation at University College London, will give the opening keynote address. Mulgan brings a wealth of experience and insight at the intersection of research and practical application. As the Chief Executive of Nesta, a global innovation foundation, and a former director of policy under Prime Minister Tony Blair, he has been a prominent figure in shaping policies and initiatives that bridge the gap between academic research and real-world impact. Mulgan is poised to deliver an engaging and enlightening keynote address that will inspire attendees to explore new avenues for collaboration and innovation in their respective fields.

Simon Marginson, Professor of Higher Education at the University of Oxford and Director of the ESRC/RE Centre for Global Higher Education (CGHE), will deliver the closing keynote address, focusing on the pivotal role of universities in global knowledge diplomacy and the evolving landscape of global science. With a research focus on global and international higher education, Marginson's work explores the multifaceted contributions of higher education institutions and their implications for addressing social inequality. While economic definitions predominate in English-speaking policy circles, Marginson's research underscores the broader individual and collective benefits of higher education recognized in diverse jurisdictions like France, Finland, South Korea, and China. Marginson's insights promise to be a thought-provoking conclusion to our conference, illuminating pathways for enhancing knowledge diplomacy in an interconnected world.

The Goethe Institut London will host the evening event on 3 July at their library in South Kensington. Focusing on the value of language learning and educational diplomacy, the event will give insights into the real-world application of bridging the gap between research and practice. It will showcase how research findings are more likely to be adopted and implemented if they are grounded in real-world relevance, while practical approaches are more likely to be effective and sustainable if they are informed by rigorous research evidence on the very concrete example of language teaching.


The Knowledge Diplomacy project is joined by Goethe Institut London, ECHIC – European Consortium for Humanities Institutes and Centres, the Royal Society, the London Partnership as well as the London Knowledge Quarter. 

The conference is co-organised by the University of London Institute in Paris, the City Law School at City, University of London, the Institute of Languages, Cultures and Societies at the School of Advanced Study, the Centre for Online and Distance Education, and ICR Research, with help of the Goethe Institut London, the Royal Society and the British Council.

Knowledge Diplomacy Conference: Research into Practice, Practice into Research - Partners

Knowledge Diplomacy Conference: Research into Practice, Practice into Research - Partners