1 Sep 2020
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Executive Diploma on International Diplomatic Law for Honorary Consuls

4 Months
Programme Area
Governance, Multilateral Diplomacy, International Law
A few fellowships for participants from SIDS and LDCs are available, reducing the fee to 2600 USD. To apply for the fellowship and reduced fee please provide UNITAR with a passport scan and a CV.
A limited number of fee reductions or waivers is available for this event. Click here for more information.
Event Focal Point Email
By application & selection
Mode of Delivery
Multilateral Diplomacy
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Honorary consuls have an important part to play in the international relations of many states, particularly smaller states and those unable to afford the costs associated with establishing conventional diplomatic and consular missions. While honorary consuls cannot replace traditional diplomats, they can facilitate multiple and deep engagements with political bodies, commercial organisations, nationals located abroad and citizens of receiving states. Their engagements can take place on different levels, including political, commercial and cultural. However, to best perform their role they need not only an understanding of the underlying legal aspects governing their role, but also practicial skills to fulfil their duties and responsibilities.

UNITAR has developed this executive diploma in cooperation with Professor J. Craig Barker (Dean of the School of Law and Social Sciences at London South Bank University) and Richard H.Griffiths, Esq (Senior Advisor at Dentons Global Law Firm). 

This is an executive level course aimed at training individuals already engaged as honorary consuls or those seeking to take up such an appointment.

On completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Summarise the history and current importance of honorary consuls in contemporary diplomatic relations;
  • Explain the legal framework governing honorary consuls;
  • Describe the normal activities of an honorary consul and assess their responsibilities;
  • Explain issues of practice and protocol;
  • Describe and critically assess the important role of honorary consuls in the modern world;
  • Discuss the future of the role of Honorary Consuls in particular in crisis situations such as evacuations, repatriations and other critical roles of the Honorary Consul in todays environment.

The course will consist of four modules: 

Module 1 – Codification of the Status of Honorary Consuls in International Law;
Module 2 – Honorary consuls and their relationship with diplomatic and consular missions;
Module 3 – The Contemporary Use of Honorary Consuls;
Module 4 – Diplomatic Protocol for Honorary Consuls.

Each of the four modules will consist of a self-directed online compontent, containing a mix of pre-recorded lectures from experts, as well as from Heads of State, Foreign Ministers or Ambassadors, who are engaged in the use of honorary consuls, interactive lessons and information forums. At the end of each module a two-day web-based workshop led by an expert on the topic will explore the practicial side of the topc and allow for peer-to-peer learning.  

Participants will be expected to engage with pre-recorded material, participate in the on-line learning sessions as well as complete the knowledge assessments in the form of a multiple-choice quiz or a series of short questions. Participants who successfully complete the knowledge assessments of all four modules and participate in all online workshops will obtain a UNITAR Executive Diploma.

For more information, please also see our brochure.


This course promotes an interactive approach through lessons and multimedia material, stimulating critical thinking.  Each module has its own learning objectives, as well as interactive online lessons, which guide participants through the contents. The lessons are also available in PDF format so participants can work offline. Contents and activities are practice-oriented and under a self-assessment approach, so participants will learn through practical examples and assignments associated with research and case scenarios. This experience will be supported by the UNITAR team, additional resources and material, and visuals such as infographics and videos.

Each module culminates in a final e-workshop conducted via the platform Zoom and will be facilitated by an expert on the theme. The material presented in the workshop will be interactive and assignments will be given for participants to further advance their knowledge.


The Executive Diploma will be designed for 25 to 30 honorary consuls, as well as those who intend to serve as honorary consuls.


Technical Requirements 

The course will be delivered through UNITAR’s e-learning platform and Zoom. UNITAR will not provide refunds for customers who face technical issues beyond UNITAR's direct control. UNITAR recommends that all prospective participants test Zoom for free at prior to confirming their payment.  

Basic system requirements: 

  • Stable internet connection 
  • Speakers and a microphone  
  • A webcam or HD webcam  
  • Or, a HD cam or HD camcorder with video capture card 

Please see further information about all technical requirements for participating in this e-workshop here: