Formerly a university teacher, I am now a freelance writer specialising in the theory and practice of diplomacy from the earliest times until the present. As well as hoping to encourage the study of diplomacy, this site provides periodic updating of my textbook (see immediately below). This page contains some news and views. The contents of the rest of the site can be navigated via the column on the left-hand side.

Diplomacy: Theory and Practice

6th edition
(Palgrave-Macmillan: Basingstoke and New York, 2022)

NEW EDITION is now available here

Citations 2.5 times the ‘discipline’ average in 2018 (Bookmetrix)


G. R. Berridge Diplomacy 6th edition

From the back cover:

“This is a highly welcome update for the best general introduction to the theory and practice of diplomacy. It is clear enough to be recommended to undergraduate students, yet sufficiently thoughtful and incisive to be read with profit by practitioners and experts.”
—John W. Young, Emeritus Professor of International History, University of Nottingham, UK

Diplomacy: Theory and Practice is a tour de force in diplomacy scholarship. Geoff Berridge has not only written the definitive text in diplomatic studies; he has done so in a lucid, accessible, and engaging way that sets the gold standard for how books should be written. Weaving together historical cases with contemporary examples, Berridge has given us essential reading for any student of international politics.”
—Marcus Holmes, Associate Professor of Government, College of William & Mary, USA

The Diplomacy of Ancient Greece

A short introduction

(DiploFoundation: 2018)

Invitations to Diplomacy series

Available to purchase on Amazon as a Kindle e-book here, and also in paperback from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Book Depository.

Diplomacy and Ancient Greece - G. R. Berridge - Kindle

China’s embassy in Ukraine

10 August 2023

Considerable attention has been focused on China’s participation in the Saudi-hosted talks at national security adviser level on Ukraine in Jedda over the weekend 5-6 August 2023, while Russia was not invited. But there is a less noticed feature of Chinese diplomacy that has possibly been unsettling President Putin for a good deal longer. Read more.

‘Agri-food-and drink attachés’ for endangered seats

23 July 2023

The crisply styled Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office has rediscovered and, in the modern way of things, rebranded the agricultural attaché. First installed in diplomatic missions after the First World War, not least those of the United States, this officer has re-appeared in some British missions abroad in the last few years as an ‘agri-food-and-drink attaché’; at least one has even been appointed at counsellor rank. Read more.

Email crash

20 July 2023

My old Virgin Media email account has crashed yet again, so I have given up on it. Anyone wishing to reach me who has not received a change of address message can do so via the CONTACT form, top left on this page.

Fleetwood Mac, ‘Perfect’ surprise

12 July 2023

About a week ago my friend and close neighbour, John Sandford-Smith, turned up at my door. In one hand he held a large tool I had lent him some time ago (he had forgotten I had told him I no longer needed it) and in the other a generously inscribed copy of his recently published memoirs, Against the Stream? Read more.

Digital Subscriptions to The New York Times

1 June 2023

A few years ago I took out a £2 a month digital subscription to The New York Times, which I thought great value for such a good newspaper. Accordingly, I recommended the deal to students. Now I have little use for it and had begun to think about cancelling my subscription, which I was told when I took it out could be done ‘at any time’. This decision was hardened when I read in my latest bank statement that my subscription had just jumped from £2 to £8 a month. OK, there has been a great deal of inflation – but four times the original rate? Read more.

New START Treaty on embassy life support

February 15 2023

It is a defining feature of the permanent embassy that – in contrast to the special mission – it has general responsibilities, and these might cover almost any subject. Although I’m guessing, a recent and extremely important case in point appears to be the role of the Russian Embassy in Washington and the US embassy in Moscow in keeping the New START Treaty on life support. Read more.

What role for diplomacy over Ukraine?

6 February 2023

A diplomatic settlement of the Ukraine conflict on terms unacceptable to Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s government should not even be considered, and – despite emerging signs of ‘Ukraine fatigue’ in some Western capitals – probably will not be. So what is the role, if any, for diplomacy over Ukraine? Read more.

Corrupt honorary consuls exposed

28 November 2022

It has long been suspected that governments riddled with corruption have allowed this reflex to extend – for a fee – to appointing rogues of all sorts to represent them as ‘honorary consuls’ in foreign states that permit them, as the vast majority do. Read more.

Ukraine diplomacy?

2 March 2022

The prospects for any serious role for diplomacy in the Ukraine crisis at the moment seem negligible. Read more.

Is Boris Johnson a crypto-fascist?

6 November, 2021

Probably not. But events of the last week, when added to an already long list of anti-democratic actions by the British prime minister, strengthen the possibility that he might as well be. I refer to his recent attempt to save a fellow Brexiteer and chum from mild punishment for spectacularly breaching parliamentary rules against paid advocacy by changing them after the event. Read more.

America’s headless embassies

11 October 2021

Astonishing to report, almost nine months since the inauguration of US President Joe Biden in January, a huge number of ambassadorial positions at US embassies and key bodies such as NATO, the EU, and the OECD, as well as senior positions in the Department of State, remain unfilled. Why has this happened and why is it serious? Read more.

Embassies and transnational repression

25 May, 2021

If the vicious authoritarian regime of Alexander Lukashenko in Belarus, now a Russian puppet state in eastern Europe, will force down an EU civil airliner in order to seize, imprison and torture an opposition journalist, it seems to me that we are entitled to ask: To what lengths will this and any regime of a similar nature also go in using their embassies to pursue their opponents in the diaspora – to engage in what is now known as ‘transnational repression’? Read more.

Boris Johnson: the charge sheet

1 May 2021

I’ve blogged very little of late, being taken up with spring gardening jobs and wrapping up a new book but I am forced back to it by the need to sound off yet again about that ‘greased piglet’, Boris Johnson, who still seems able to get away with murder – or at least manslaughter. Read more.

‘Brexit: a tragic national error’

1 January, 2021

Thus the headline on The Guardian’s eloquent editorial today, New Year’s Day 2021, the day on which the UK starts life outside the European Union. I have nothing to add to it – except be sure to click on the link ‘led by journalists’ (hell, there it is, I’ve provided it myself) in order to re-read Max Hastings’s justly famous exposé of Boris Johnson’s true character.

Boris Johnson takes UK down

11 December, 2020

Brexit head-banger in chief, first liar of the United Kingdom, and second-rate comedian, Boris Johnson, is primed to lead the UK, with sickening relish and grinning the while, into the abyss. Read more.

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