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Last few days to apply... advanced thematic course in Cybersecurity

The call for applications for DiploFoundation's advanced thematic course in Cybersecurity closes in a few days. The course starts on 7 October. Details about the course are available at http://www.diplomacy.edu/courses/IGCBP-Adv-security (click on the orange tabs at the top), or below.
Please email ig@diplomacy.edu if you require further information.

Course details:

Key words that we increasingly see in the media with regard to the Internet include stolen digital assets, attacks on government servers, Internet fraud, child pornography.

There is growing concern about misuse and abuse of the Internet. How do we ensure the future growth of the Internet as a facilitator of global economic and social growth, while also addressing the risks that it creates?

The 10-week advanced thematic course in Cybersecurity covers in-depth aspects of privacy and security, core infrastructure and cyberterrorism, policies and strategies, as well as social aspects and other issues, including child online safety.

By the end of the course, participants should be able to:

  • Identify the defining features of cybersecurity, and the factors which shape the international issues.
  • Identify principal threats to cybersecurity.  Describe and analyse the key cybersecurity issues for users, and states.
  • Understand and analyse the Internet security issues for e-commerce including online banking and identity.
  • Explain the issues involved in cybercrime, its impact and investigation.
  • Understand the threats to the core Internet infrastructure.
  • Explain the concepts of cyberwarfare and cyberterrorism, and how their role in international Internet policy.
  • Understand and assess the challenges involved in social aspects of cybersecurity.
  • Explain and analyse the international frameworks for cybersecurity policies and strategies.

The course forms part of the Thematic Phase of Diplo’s Internet Governance Capacity Building Programme (IGCBP). This phase offers in-depth courses that provide deeper understanding of a particular issue.

Excerpt from course materials

‘...One side-effect of the rapid integration of the Internet in almost all aspects of human activity is the increased vulnerability of modern society. The Internet is part of the global critical infrastructure. Other core services of modern society, such as electric grids, transport systems, and health services are increasingly dependent on the Internet. As attacks on these systems may cause severe disruption and have huge financial consequences, they are frequent targets.’ (Lexture text 4.3)

Course outline

The thematic course in Cybersecurity includes one week of hypertext practice and platform familiarisation and introduction, and 8 in-depth course texts:

Chapter 1. Introduction to security.

Chapter 2. Cybersecurity: online threats to individuals, privacy and security as challenges of cybersecurity, cybersecurity and public key infrastructure, building trust in e-commerce.

Chapter 3. Cybercrime: history of cybercrime; classification; impact; framework for combating cybercrime; law enforcement; computer investigation; forensics; legal aspects of computer forensics.

Chapter 4. Security of the Core Infrastructure: Domain Name System security; unilateral control, security Threats; future networks (smart networks/Internet of things).

Chapter 5. Cyberwarfare and Cyberterrorism: International norms; the Geneva Convention; definitions of war and cyberwar; links to national security and critical infrastructure; links to international initiatives; cyberterrorism, DoS; control/governance of CIR.

Chapter 6:  Social Aspects of Cybersecurity: Privacy and security as challenges of cybersecurity; defining Internet safety; child protection; social aspects of cybersecurity.

Chapter 7:  Internet safety issues: Objectionable and harmful content; freedom of expression; reliability of information; health, ethics, and gender; and information aggression and openness.

Chapter 8: Policies and strategies: Developed countries; international frameworks: Council of Europe; European Union directives related to data protection and cybersecurity strategy; ITU Draft Initiative on Cybersecurity; Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe; business initiatives; SAFECode; Intel and embedded security; importance and risks of public-private co-operation.


‘The course is updated with the latest security issues, so we have a global view of what is going on now, and what organisations are involved at international level in the fight against cybercriminality.’

‘... [the course lecturer] has been very encouraging to think on even the different side which may not be very popular side. So both pros and cons of the issues come to light in the class, encouraging deeper learning.’

Who should apply:

Diplo seeks applications from the following, from both developed and developing countries:

  • Officials in government ministries, departments, or institutions dealing with Information Society, Internet and ICT-related policy issues (e.g. telecommunications, education, foreign affairs, justice);
  • Postgraduate students, academics and researchers in the IG field (e.g. in telecommunications, electrical engineering, law, economics, development studies);
  • Civil society activists in the IG and Information Society fields;
  • Journalists covering IG issues; and
  • Individuals in Internet business-related fields (e.g. ISPs, software developers).

This course may also be of interest to:

  • Practising diplomats, civil servants, and others working in international relations who want to refresh or expand their knowledge on the subject, under the guidance of experienced practitioners and academics.
  • Postgraduate students of diplomacy or international relations wishing to study topics not offered through their university programmes or diplomatic academies and to gain deeper insight through interaction with practising diplomats.


This course is conducted online over a period of ten weeks, including one week of classroom orientation, eight weeks of dynamic class content and activities, and one week for the final assignment. Reading materials and tools for online interaction are provided through an online classroom. Each week, participants read the provided lecture texts, adding comments, references, and questions in the form of hypertext entries. The tutor and other participants read and respond to these entries, creating interaction based on the lecture text. During the week, participants complete additional online activities (e.g. further discussion via blogs or forums or quizzes). At the end of the week, participants and tutors meet online in a chat room to discuss the week’s topic.

Courses are based on a collaborative approach to learning, involving a high level of interaction. This course requires a minimum of 7-8 hours of study time per week.

Participants are invited to join Diplo’s global Internet governance online community of over 1,400 members, and to attend monthly webinars and other IG-related events and activities.

The course materials, the e-learning platform, and the working language of the course is English. Applicants should consider whether their reading and writing skills in English are sufficient to follow postgraduate level materials and discussion.


Applicants for the certificate course must have:

  • Either completed the course Introduction to Internet Governance, or have equivalent knowledge of Internet governance issues, or experience in the field, or experience of the multistakeholder approach in international affairs;
  • Sufficient ability in the English language to undertake postgraduate level studies (including reading academic texts, discussing complex concepts with other course participants, and submitting written essay assignments);
  • Regular access to the Internet (dial-up connection is sufficient, although broadband is preferable);
  • A minimum of 7-8 hours commitment per week, and the readiness to participate in class online sessions (once a week at specified times).


The course fee for the Diplo Certificate Course is of €600. Applicants must pay full fees upon official acceptance into the course. The fee includes:

  • Full tuition
  • Course orientation pack where applicable (optional readings)
  • Access to all course materials online, via Diplo’s online classroom
  • Personal interaction via the online classroom with course lecturers, staff and other participants
  • Online technical support
  • For Diplo Certificate Courses, postgraduate-level certificate issued by DiploFoundation on successful completion of course requirements (interaction and participation, all assignments)

Financial assistance

A limited number of partial scholarships (maximum 20%) will be offered to participants from developing and emerging countries. Participants who would like to apply for financial assistance must upload the following documents with their application:

  • a CV or resumé;
  • a motivation letter outlining relevant professional and educational background, and interest in the course.

As Diplo's ability to offer scholarship support is limited, candidates are strongly encouraged to seek scholarship funding directly from local or international institutions. Our guide to Finding Scholarships for Online Study may provide you with some useful starting points.

How to apply:

A number of routes for application are available:

Learn more about certificate and accredited courses, and about learning with Diplo.

Apply for a Diplo Certificate Course

Applicants for certificate courses should apply online.

Late applications will be considered if there are spaces available in the course. Please e-mail ig@diplomacy.edu to request a deadline extension.

For further information, please e-mail us at ig@diplomacy.edu

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Visit Diplo's IG website, www.diplomacy.edu/ig for info on programmes, events, and resources.

The full text of the book An Introduction to Internet Governance (6th edition) is available here. The translated versions in Serbian/BCS, French, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Chinese, and Portuguese are also available for download.


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