The John Porter Diplomacy Centre is a key part of the Hertford 2030 aspiration to prepare students for life, work and citizenship, and to be a frontline for a better society.

The Centre aims to make a practical contribution to the great peace processes of the 21st Century, from stability in the Middle East to climate change, and from reform of the international architecture to the challenges and opportunities of emerging technologies. It will support scholarships, research, innovation and practical peacemaking.

In 2024/25 we will continue to:

  • Join the dots: convene academics and practitioners to develop practical peacebuilding and diplomacy initiatives
  • Support and reinforce Oxford’s academic work on the Sustainable Development Goals, diplomacy and peacemaking
  • Support access to Oxford for less advantaged international students
  • Support student development as part of the Head, Hand and Hertford initiative
  • Identify and build partnerships with key partners, including the UN, governments, think tanks and NGOs

Recent talks include:

China and the Future Global Order. Speaker: Chris Patten.

Healing the Wounds of History from Lebanon to Europe, and South Africa to Northern Ireland. Speakers: Alexandra Asseily, Athol Williams, Dr Kathrin Bachleitner.

What can Tomorrow’s Peacemakers learn from Northern Ireland? Speakers: Jonathan Powell, David Cooke, Ian McBride, Rosie Wrigglesworth.

Peace with our DNA: an investigation of microbial weapons. Speaker: Dr Paul Keim.

Peace with Oxford: how can the University be a better neighbour? Speakers: Lam Joar, Ewa Gluza

Peace with our Planet. Speakers: Adam Parr, Anette Mikes

Peace with Technology. In partnership with Clifford Chance. Speakers: Carissa Véliz and Tom Fletcher.

Peace with Ourselves: how sleep can change your life. Speaker: Prof Vladyslav Vyazovskiy. Old Lodgings.

Oxford and the SDGs: how can the University be a frontline for a better world? Speakers: Paul Polman and Alexander Betts.

Women, Conflict and the Future of Peacemaking. Speakers: Richard Nugee, Tiril Rahn, Sara Rahim and NneNne Iwuji-Eme.

Research Associates

Our Research Associates will be working on a series of projects, drawing on huge experience and expertise. These include:

Kathrin Bachleitner (Oxford academic working on healing the wounds of history)

NneNne Iwyuji-Eme (First British black female career diplomat to be appointed High Commissioner)

Lam Joar (Sudanese activist working on peace with local communities, and Oxford as a better neighbour)

Jonathan McClory  (Founder of the Soft Power Index, working on the future of soft power)

Adam Parr (Oxford-based barrister researching law, enterprise and the environment)

Noah Raford (Founding executive of the Museum of the Future: Gaming, Social Movements and Conflict Prevention)

Sara Rahim  (Oxford alumna who worked on development policy in Afghanistan, now based in the UK)

Tiril Rahn  (Founder of Oxford Diplomacy Society, working on women and peace making)

Athol Williams (Founder of the Institute of Social and Corporate Ethics, working on the role of business in shaping better societies)