Universidad Europea debates International Relations

The “IR Studies, what future? what professional career?” seminar brings experts, diplomats, journalists and public officials together at the Ibero-American General Secretariat

This Tuesday, May 16 the Universidad Europea held the seminar on “International Relations Studies (IR), what future? what professional career?, organized in collaboration with esglobal at the Conservatory of the Ibero-American General Secretariat (Segib). The forum was created to share and present the different professional opportunities in IR based on the affinities, preferences and possibilities of each professional.

The Deputy Dean of Law and International Relations at the Universidad Europea School of Social Sciences and Communication Ana María Ovejero opened the seminar dedicated to IR, which she referred to as “a key cross-disciplinary area”.  The session was also attended by María Salvadora Ortiz, Director of the External Relations Division at Segib and was divided into two tables: “From theory to practice: experts, diplomats and public officials” and “Corporate diplomacy: The importance of International Relations in a globalized business world”, moderated by Editors-in-chief at esglobal Ana Mangas and Lourdes Romero, respectively.

The first table comprised Dimitri Barua, Press Officer at the European Commission Representation in Spain; María Solanas, Project Coordinator of the Elcano Royal Institute; Javier Sandomingo, Spanish diplomat; and Miguel Ángel Benedicto, IR professor at the Universidad Europea.

Based on their experience, the speakers shared with students the path that has led them to work in International Relations. They also reflected on the qualities required by all professionals in the sector, mentioning the following: curiosity, flexibility, versatility, passion for lifelong learning, capacity to analyze and listen, critical thinking and an interest in others.

This point was also agreed by the speakers on the other table, who included Shaun Riordan, diplomat, professor and corporate diplomat; Juan Luis Manfredi, professor at the Universidad de Castilla – La Mancha and business consultant; José María Robles Fraga, diplomat and Director of International Relations at Banco Santander; and María Fuentenebro, Managing Partner of Multilateral Relations at Vinces.

In addition to the characteristics of future IR professionals, the second table addressed the issue of corporate diplomacy, a concept that is “very recent in Spain”, according to Shaun Riordan, but that is also essential today. In fact, as explained by María Fuentenebro, “a company that does not get on the corporate diplomacy train will lose market and legitimacy”.