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Protocol Basics

Introduction to Protocol and Diplomacy | ECPD100
This unit offers a brief history of protocol and its main practices. It underlines the importance of understanding protocol as an inherent part of diplomacy. It also explains the difference between the various forms of protocol and helps participants to understand why key concepts such as protocol, etiquette and ceremonial are interdependent, but not reducible to each other.


Precedence and its Criteria | ECPD101
This unit introduces precedence lists, their socio-cultural importance and their practical relevance. First, it adopts an anthropological perspective to analyse the development of precedence lists and the cultural realities that such lists convey. Each country honours different functions and the unit outlines which criteria may be adopted when determining the order of precedence. Second, it addresses how precedence lists can be used to facilitate efficient and appropriate communication and planning.


Seating Arrangements for Events | ECPD102
This unit examines the different seating arrangements that can be used at conferences and other high level events to best ensure their success. It looks at the preparations that need to be made prior to an event in order to ensure that people are correctly seated. It raises some of the different challenges that can arise in the area of seating and looks at how these can be addressed by considering precedence lists and modern seating arrangements.


Symbolism and the World of Flags | ECPD103
This course begins by addressing social theories on the meaning and importance of symbols and signs. It then discusses the world of flags, and their meaning and precedence. On a practical level it demonstrates how the protocol officer can assure that symbols, and in particular flags, are correctly positioned for the various types of events where they might be required, and that those symbols, be given the position of honour at a particular event that they deserve. It also shows how symbols can unintentionally cause offence or damage a diplomatic relationship.


Invitations and Gifts | ECPD104
This unit discusses the practicalities surrounding lists, invitations, and the giving and receiving of gifts. It looks at the preparation required both prior and during the event, such as preparing guest lists, sending the right format of invitation for the level of event, etc. The participants of this course will be able to determine, based on the formality of the event, which invitation forms are required by protocol. They will also understand how to compose and manage invitations in a way that is useful to an event organiser and other members of an event-organising team. Lastly, they will know which events require which gifts, at which moment during the event they should be distributed, and how they should be exchanged.


Protocol at the Table | ECPD105
This unit addresses customs and traditions that relate to the table. It begins by examining the different food types that should or should not be served to foreign visitors, table manners, and the traditional table settings used in different countries at breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Different aspects of protocol at the table are introduced and examined, including the importance of etiquette.


The Role of the Protocol Officer | ECPD106
This unit discusses the important role of protocol and the protocol officer in ensuring efficient and successful communication, high-level event planning, and cross-cultural awareness. The importance of this role in the diplomatic context is described. This unit outlines the tools and skills that are necessary as a protocol officer in order to lead and support other staff and to communicate with the public. The unit is designed to enable the student to grasp some of the sociological underpinnings of the practice of protocol in today’s society. It encourages students to consider the importance of signs and communication in the practice of protocol.


Official Events | ECPD107
This unit offers a comprehensive review and discussion of protocol as applied in the organisation of an official event. It provides participants with an understanding of the different elements that need to be considered when planning a high-level event depending on the attendees. It discusses the preparations and the rules that should be followed when signing treaties and agreements. It further discusses how to host high-level delegations that accompany such events.


Organisation of Official Visits workshop | ECPD108
This workshop covers the protocol to be followed for the preparation and organisation of state and official visits. These visits play a significant role in strengthening bilateral relations between countries and international organisations.


Organisation of Press Conferences workshop | ECPD109
This workshop covers the protocol that should be followed in the organisation of press conferences where announcements or presentations are to be made. It discusses the preparations that need to be made for the press and how to deal with security officers.


Organisation of Conferences and Summits workshop | ECPD110
This workshop covers the protocol that should be followed in the organisation of summits, conferences, and meetings where agreements are to be signed or negotiations are to be held.


Organisation of Ceremonies workshop | ECPD111
This workshop covers the implementation of protocol procedures in official ceremonies, be it a funeral or a commemoration. It provides participants with an understanding of the different factors that need to be considered when planning a high-level event.

Protocol Applied


Diplomatic Protocol | ECPD200
This unit assesses the legal basis of modern diplomatic protocol. It offers a presentation of the diplomatic status and of the main features of the Vienna Convention in terms of rights, privileges, and obligations of diplomats. It also discusses the hierarchy of diplomatic representatives. In light of how this Convention has been implemented in various states, a critical approach is taken in order to move from an analytical description of the legal basis to a practical approach.


Titles, Honours, and Decorations | ECPD201
This unit looks at official titles, awards, and decorations in different parts of the world. It examines what different titles, and civilian and military decorations mean in practice and what rights and responsibilities accompany such recognition. It examines the traditions and customs that accompany certain positions and the application of protocol to people of different rank or position.


Protocol in the European Institutions | ECPD202
This course unit differentiates between the practice of protocol at an EU and at a European Member State level. It identifies the key structures and agents within the European Union. Moreover, it discusses how the different EU institutions interact with each other, how the European External Action Service works, as well as how the EU institutions approach protocol and different symbols. Lastly, it addresses how this approach differs from the practice of protocol in the 28 member states.


Protocol in International Organisations | ECPD203
This unit discusses how international organisations deal with cultural specificities in the practice of high-level protocol. It uses the UN as a case study to demonstrate how this particular international organisation has approached multiculturalism and developed a common practice of protocol. It does this by discussing the workings and the values of the UN and then by illustrating how the UN has acted to establish procedures and rules of protocol that ensure that each culture is treated with respect and understanding in its day-to-day operations.


Protocol in the Armed Forces | ECPD204
This unit introduces the use of protocol in both military events and in state events where a military display is being used, or where the military is participating. Within the military, specific ceremonies and parades are presided over by a VIP, and this unit looks at the information that a VIP should have prior to such events. This unit looks at how the military is best incorporated into state events and how its presence can be used to honour, for example, state visitors. It looks at the circumstances in which this is appropriate.


Business Protocol | ECPD205
This unit has been designed to provide an overview of the business environment. When conducting business in various types of organisations and industries, it is useful to understand the way business is conducted, the culture of the environment, the structure of the organisation, and the importance of protocol in this context.


Protocol in Sports Events | ECPD206
This unit discusses the organisational aspects of major sporting events and the importance of protocol in these contexts. It begins by examining the different types of protocol that have been established, for example which flags and anthems to use at which moments during the event. It also looks at the ways in which the Olympic Games and sporting organisations such as Formula One, honour VIPs and guests (mixing those who have paid extra to be honoured with those who are honoured outside of the event), as well as sporting victors, and the lessons that can be taken from these examples and applied to other similar types of events.


VIP Security | ECPD207
This course evaluates in detail the dynamics between protocol and security in official, private and international events on an international level, as well as the multiple challenges faced when protecting foreign dignitaries. It further explains executive protection required by the receiving  state and several protocol dynamics underlining this duty. After following this course, students will be able to list key security factors necessary to coordinate and provide protection to individuals during international summits; they will have an understanding of various challenges faced by both the security agents and the protocol personnel; as well as general knowledge regarding international terrorism, and detecting and combatting international crime.


Organisation and Ceremonies in the Monotheistic Religions | ECPD208
This unit defines the terms, concepts and religious views surrounding Weddings, Divorce, Mourning and Funerals in the five main world religions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism. It will allow participants to understand the different ceremonies and rituals practiced by each faith on this subject and how they are conducted, their rules and structure.

Soft Diplomacy Skills


Public Diplomacy Applied | ECPD300
This unit looks at the way in which culture is used as a vehicle of foreign relations. It discusses the underlying logic of public diplomacy and how it relates to public relations. It offers a theoretical explanation of the evolution, rationale, and scope of public diplomacy and its dichotomy into soft and hard power. It then compares the features of soft power in public diplomacy with those in public relations, by addressing soft power and power shifts in both spheres, and uses these to narrow the gap between public diplomacy and public relations.


Relations with the Media | ECPD301
This unit examines the importance of managing the media. It looks at which official events the press are most interested in and how information to the press should be managed. It addresses the problems surrounding the status of the press at events, looking at how they should be treated to maintain a healthy relationship with the protocol department. It discusses how an adequate press area can be established by the use of such elements as lighting, sound equipment, cords, and specific access to events for the press. Lastly, it looks at how to best deal with foreign press.


Cross Cultural Awareness | ECPD302
This unit offers an introduction to the field of cross-cultural communication analysing how people, companies, and institutions from different cultural backgrounds communicate with each other. It discusses the features of collective and individualistic societies and notions of time, hierarchy, proximity, intimacy and verbal expression. It offers key principles from the fields of communication, philosophy, and conflict resolution to establish ways in which people from different socio-historical backgrounds can learn to communicate successfully with each other.


European Perceptions of Arab Culture | ECPD303
This unit offers an analysis of the ways in which the West perceives the Arab world. It provides a sociological and anthropological analysis of both cultures and the development of ideas in both contexts. It identifies the Arab legacy and influence in Europe, historically and contemporarily. It addresses the West’s understanding of the Arab world and the ways in which it can misinterpret the importance of language, the historical development of religious traditions, and the complexity of inter-Arab political relations. It discusses the successes and failures of various Western and Arab actors, notably the media, in creating a better understanding of Arab culture in the West.


The Rise of China | ECPD304
This unit looks at the way in which protocol is used in China. It looks at the values, cultures, and attitudes that characterise protocol in this country. It will enable the protocol officer to better prepare diplomats and VIPs who plan to visit China.


Relations with Sub-Saharan Africa | ECPD305
This unit discusses the practice of protocol in Africa, looking at specific practices that have been developed in different regions of Africa. It will help to identify certain do’s and don’ts that are key to successful relations in Africa. This unit is designed to enable the protocol officer to better prepare diplomats and VIPs who plan to visit different regions of Africa.


India Insights | ECPD306
This unit looks at the way in which protocol is used in India. It looks at the values, cultures, and attitudes that characterise protocol in this country. It will enable the protocol officer to better prepare diplomats and VIPs for their visits to India.


Negotiation Skills | ECPD307
This unit features new and updated inputs in understanding and managing negotiation processes and conflict resolutions. You will learn about the negotiation process and how it is influenced by conflict, and by its players. You will gain specific negotiations skills that will help you to produce desired results, whether agreement, stalemate, or breakdown.

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