Wed, 22 Mar|
Forging an Independent Foreign Policy for NZ: Terence O'Brien's Imprint
"Discrete geography is no guarantee for New Zealand of immunity from upheavals in the wider world" - Terence O’Brien
Time & Location
22 Mar 2023, 5:45 pm – 6:45 pm
Wellington, 88 The Terrace, Wellington Central, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
About the Event
Terence O'Brien was a diplomat (qualified as "legendary" by Helen Clark), free thinker, and giant of NZ foreign policy who helped secure his country's seat at the UN Security Council 1992-93 against the odds. He served Aotearoa New Zealand with distinction for over 40 years in the foreign service, and as founding director of the Centre for Strategic Studies.
Join Diplosphere's panel and drinks supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, as we celebrate and reflect upon Terence's not inconsiderable contribution to NZ's independent foreign policy.
We will discuss themes and principles that underpin much of Terence O'Brien’s writings and talks over the years, such as (but not exclusively):
- How does NZ strike the right balance between multilateral and bilateral diplomacy, or in other words, pursuing interests collectively with others, or individually with like-minded partners?
- How should NZ’s bearings and alignments internationally adjust to a world where the international pecking order is being altered?
- We will also consider how, why, and when did NZ’s independent foreign policy emerged, and the principles that underpinned Terence O'Brien's thinking.
- The Rt Hon Jim Bolger ONZ, former prime minister
- Chris Seed, Chief Executive and Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Trade, MFAT
- Michael Powles, former NZ ambassador to Indonesia, China, the UN in New York, and the Pacific, senior fellow at the Centre for Strategic Studies
- Malcolm McKinnon, New Zealand historian, adjunct associate professor, Victoria University of Wellington
- John O'Brien, CEO of Carbon Market Solutions, former advisor at UNDP, Terence's son
Chair: Maty Nikkhou-O'Brien, Founder & Executive Director, DiplosphereAgenda:
- 5:00pm-5:45pm: Networking drinks courtesy of MFAT
- 5:45pm-7:00pm: Panel discussion