The next big revolution of the information age should occur in the realm of diplomacy. The United States has been undergoing a revolution in business affairs since the 1960s, and has also undertaken a revolution in military affairs (RMA) since the late 1980s. Now the time is ripe for a counterpart “revolution in diplomatic affairs” (RDA):
Diplomats will have to rethink what is “information,” and see that a new realm is emerging — the noosphere, a global “realm of the mind” — that may have a profound effect on statecraft.
The information age will continue to undermine the conditions for classic diplomacy based on realpolitik and “hard power,” and will instead favor the emergence of a new diplomacy based on what we call noöpolitik (nü–oh–poh–li–teek) and its preference for “soft power.”