MEDAC: Strengthening Mediterranean Diplomacy

The Mediterranean region is marked by serious democratic deficits, environmental and demographic challenges, multiple conflicts and difficult political transformation processes. It is of eminent importance for Europe’s security. Switzerland’s longstanding support of the Mediterranean Academy for Diplomatic Studies (MEDAC) in Malta aims to strengthen Mediterranean diplomacy in areas such as human rights and good governance and to build trust among young aspiring diplomats from various countries of the region.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
MENA Regional
Conflict & fragility
Human rights
Conflict prevention
Human rights (incl. Women's rights)
01.08.2014 - 30.09.2017
CHF 1'425'000
  • The Mediterranean region – comprised of North Africa and West Asia – is marked by a number of major social, economic and political challenges ranging from instances of difficult inter-state relations, environmental and demographic risks to serious democratic deficits.
  • Peace and stability in this region is viewed as a crucial factor for the stability in Europe.
  • Malta is located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea and has historically been an important broker between Europe and North Africa/West Asia.
  • Since its inception in 1990, MEDAC has established itself as a centre of excellence in Mediterranean diplomacy and is widely recognised as a leading training institution.

To develop common academic reference points for Mediterranean diplomacy in areas such as  human rights, good governance, security sector governance as well as gender and to build trust among young aspiring diplomats from various countries of the region.

Target groups


  • 45 young aspiring diplomats (15 per academic year)
  • MEDAC alumni
  • Other students and civil society representatives
  • Swiss Chairman


Politicians, other academics, interested public

Medium-term outcomes
  1. To contribute to academic debate and excellence on Mediterranean diplomacy, including issues such as human rights, good governance, security sector governance and gender.
  2. To provide a platform for a shared understanding of economic, political and social challenges facing the Mediterranean region among young aspiring diplomats from the region.
  3. To foster exchange and debate among the MEDAC Alumni beyond their masters’ course.
  4. To strengthen cooperation between state and civil society representatives in the Mediterranean region.

Expected results:  

  1. 45 young aspiring diplomats from the Mediterranean region receive a scholarship to obtain a Masters (M. Dip) with a special focus on the Mediterranean region.
  2. Awareness on challenges facing the region is raised through the organisation of conferences, workshops and other outreach activities.
  3. Organization of 7 alumni events and other activities (partly in cooperation with Swiss Embassies) involving state and civil society representatives.
  4. Organisation of the Human Dimension Programme, comprising a summer school and a workshop on human rights issues in the Mediterranean region.

Results from previous phases:  

  • MEDAC’s mission is to train young aspiring diplomats, primarily from the Mediterranean region.
  • Over the last 24 years, more than 600 diplomats and students from almost 60 different countries have graduated from the Academy. Today, many of them occupy very senior positions in their respective countries.
  • In recent years, MEDAC has focused on strengthening its alumni network, and a number of events involving MEDAC alumni have been organised either in Malta, or in other countries in cooperation with the respective Swiss and Maltese Embassies.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
Foreign academic and research organisation
  • Other Academic Research North

Coordination with other projects and actors

Potential synergies with the activities and projects of the Division Europe and Mediterranean Region will be sought, for example through the organisation of events at MEDAC.

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF   1'425'000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF   1'440'482 Total project since first phase Swiss budget CHF  1'900'000 Budget inclusive project partner CHF  4'750'000
Project phases Phase 3 01.10.2017 - 31.03.2020   (Current phase)

Phase 2 01.08.2014 - 30.09.2017   (Active)

Phase 1 01.10.2010 - 30.09.2014   (Active)