September 2, 2016 Opinion
Who would have thought that the Swiss Embassy would pioneer a brand new concept, the pop-up embassy? But leave it to Swiss ambassador to Denmark, Benedikt Wechsler, to come up with a concept so fresh and yet so absolutely logical at the same time.
The old-school diplomatic set-ups from the cold war do not address today’s needs. Many consulate functions are becoming an on-line matter. In short: the world of diplomacy is being disrupted. So, what is an ambassador to do?
Ambassador Benedikt Wechsler believes modern diplomacy is all about bringing people together, beyond the traditional diplomatic circles. It's also about building new relations. This means meeting people where they are — or bringing people to the embassy. This is why you may find the Swiss ambassador sitting at a regular Copenhagen café table with his Pop-Up Embassy. He is always ready to answer the question question: why do the Swiss have so many referendums or why are they so good with money? Ask away!
But how do you create a strong, yet dynamic framework for a variety of new ways of engaging with the public as an embassy? The Ambassador asked Urgent.Agency to help carve out the concept for “The Open Embassy” – a rare attempt at combining the world of diplomacy and traditional embassy practice with event-based cultural, artistic and business exchange.We came up with a visual identity to support this brand-new concept as well as the ambassador’s ace in the hole: The Swiss Pavilion – a beautiful concrete pavilion on the grounds of the ambassador’s private home, ideal for hosting cultural events with the Swiss, the Danes and everything in between. And we have developed the visual concepts and formats that support the new ways of thinking diplomacy.
In today’s political and social climate, it is as important as ever to rethink cultural and political networks – and to design qualified interfaces that support quality, openness and cultural exchange. We hope to pursue the investigation of new formats and designs in the world of diplomacy in the future.