Over the course of a thirty year career in diplomatic services, Charles Crawford has seen triumph and tragedy firsthand. He served as British Ambassador in Poland, Belgrade, and Sarajevo. Today he shares with us some of the fruits of his varied experience as he illustrates the forces at the core of effective change initiatives.

Charles Crawford joined the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1979. He served in communist Yugoslavia (1981-84); as FCO Speech-writer (1984-87); in South Africa as apartheid ended (1987-91); and in Moscow after the USSR collapsed (1991-96).

He was British Ambassador in Sarajevo after the conflict (1996-98); in Belgrade after the fall of Milosevic (2001-03); and in Warsaw (2003-07).

During his FCO career Charles Crawford contributed to speeches by members of the Royal Family, Prime Ministers and different Ministers. His work was praised at high levels in London, NATO and the European Union (“fabulously readable and interesting analysis … acrobatic and eye-catching use of language”).

In 2005 a private email sent by Charles Crawford from Warsaw to Whitehall offering ‘blackly humorous’ suggestions on the EU Budget process was leaked to the Sunday Times, generating controversy in the British, Polish and European/US media.

Charles Crawford left the FCO in 2007 and is now a consultant and qualified Mediator. His writings have appeared in the Independent, Guardian, National Review Online, Radio Free Europe, and DIPLOMAT. His website www.charlescrawford.biz was a Top 20 UK Libertarian Blog in the 2008/2009 Total Politics surveys.

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Translation: Agnieszka Jędrzejczyk
Review: Krystian Aparta

Original subtitles: Krystian Aparta


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