One of the things I am passionate about is economic diplomacy. As an accomplished business leader and someone with an MBA from a distinguished university, I have a firm grasp on economics and their influence on everything from politics to education. In short, money talks. Economic diplomacy rests on the fundamental principle.
In this post I outline three reasons economic diplomacy is so important to achieving many of the world’s most critical goals. But first, a brief definition is in order.
Economic diplomacy is a form of diplomacy that uses a full array of economic tools to achieve diplomatic goals. For example, the United States exerted its economic influence at the Bretton Woods Conference of 1944. As a result, both the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and International Bank for Reconstruction and Development were established.
1. Economics Touch Everything
With the definition of economic diplomacy out of the way, let us get to the reasons why it is so important. At the top of the list is the undeniable fact that economics touch everything. You cannot escape economics at any level.
At the personal level, economics influence where you live, what you eat, and the clothes you wear. It affects your level of education and the jobs you pursue. Economics even influence how you see the world. Furthermore, economics are even more pervasive on a global level.
Global economics influence everything from human rights to education and healthcare. Different nations first relate to one another economically. Everything else follows. For that reason, economic tools can be very influential in achieving desired goals.
2. Economics Are the Fuel of Change
Think of something you are passionate about on a global scale. One of my passions is human rights. Let’s say I join an initiative to improve human rights around the world. As noble as my volunteer efforts might be, little will be accomplished if the organization I belong to doesn’t have the economic resources to achieve its goals.
Advocacy and action are the engine that drives change. Economics are the fuel. Without fuel, the engine will not run. Therefore, affecting real and lasting change requires economic resources.
Economic diplomacy is all about providing fuel for the engine. As an American citizen and businesswoman, I am most interested in using American economic tools to achieve diplomatic means. We can use our economics to fuel the engine of change all over the world.
3. National Economies Are Linked
Finally, national economies are linked whether individual citizens know it or not. If you need proof, just check the stock market next time political unrest emerges somewhere in the world. Check oil prices next time something happens in the Middle East.
The global recession that gripped the world beginning in 2008 started here in the US. Our economy crashed when the housing bubble burst. It didn’t take long for Europe to crash, then Asia and most of the rest of the world. Even with separate nations still conducting their own sovereign affairs, our economics are all intrinsically linked.
As unpleasant as it may sound, the reality of global economics underscores the fact that money talks. If you want to achieve a certain goal somewhere in the world, be it at home or abroad, those you need to work with you as partners respond to economic influence.
I am a firm believer in using economic diplomacy to achieve human rights, women’s rights, lasting sustainable peace, incoming quality, and so much more. The United States has a long history of successful economic diplomacy. We should continue our efforts to achieve a better world for all.