Power and diplomacy in the post-liberal cyberspace

Andre Barrinha, Thomas Renard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


It is becoming increasingly consensual that we have or are now transitioning from an international liberal order to a different reality. Whether that reality is different solely in terms of power dynamics, or also in terms of values and institutions is up for discussion. The growing body of literature on ‘post-liberalism’ is used as an entry-point for this article, which aims to explore how the post-liberal transition applies to cyberspace. We explore how power dynamics are evolving in cyberspace, as well as how established norms, values and institutions are contested. This article then looks at the emergence of cyber diplomacy as a consequence and response to the post-liberal transition. As it will be argued, if cyberspace was a creation of the liberal order, cyber-diplomacy is a post-liberal world practice. What role it plays in shaping a new order or building bridges between different political visions, and what it means in terms of the future of cyberspace, will constitute key points of discussion.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
JournalInternational Affairs
Early online date4 Feb 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 Feb 2020

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