Alternative Diplomacy and Optimal Secrecy Selection in Diplomatic Relations

Document Type : Research Paper




Secrecy in diplomatic relations can be both necessary and dangerous at the same time. In the Westphalian system, the concept of secrecy has become a standard and largely legitimate form of diplomatic action by reference to national security needs. On the other hand, with the recent developments in the concept of sovereignty in the domestic and international arenas, the development of such communications, the concept of transparency has been taken into consideration as one of the main elements of national security and has given rise to a concept called the transparency-Secrecy paradox. The basis of this paradox is that secrecy in diplomatic negotiations, justified by national security, could ultimately, and simultaneously, seriously undermine the credibility of governments, and therefore undermine national security. This paper reaches to the most important variables that influence the optimal level of secrecy using multi-criteria decision-making and network analysis modeling. This level of secrecy must at the same time ensure the effectiveness of diplomatic relations, while minimizing the risk to the credibility of the governments applying these methods. In the end, it is shown what pattern of diplomatic negotiations can provide this optimal level of secrecy when some of these variables are prioritized.


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