Catherine Ashton on Diplomacy, Ukraine, and Her New Book

From 2009 to 2014, Catherine Ashton served as the European Union’s (EU) first high representative for foreign affairs and security policy. In that role, she was the EU’s senior  negotiator for some of the most important international agreements of the early 21st century, including the 2013 Serbia-Kosovo settlement and the lead-up to the Iran nuclear deal. In her forthcoming book And Then What?, Ashton shares her personal insights into modern diplomacy and her experiences in dealing with some of the thorniest security challenges throughout her tenure.

In the first episode of War & Peace in 2023, Catherine Ashton joins Olga Oliker and Elissa Jobson for a conversation on the role of diplomacy in a world where it seems to increasingly take a back seat to conflict. They assess the EU's diplomatic response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year and the efficacy of sanctions as a tool in international relations. They also discuss how the war might affect the European security landscape in the long term. In closing, they ask how to bring more women to the key debates and decision-making roles in foreign affairs and international diplomacy. 

For more on the topics discussed in this episode, make sure to check out our Ukraine country page and our global issues page on Multilateral Diplomacy.

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