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Russia, Diplomatically Speaking - a new book by Stuart Prior Print E-mail

December 2011 - Prior Group and the Moscow News presenting: “Russia, Diplomatically Speaking” - There are many aspects to the profession of diplomacy, one of the most important, and in my view under-rated, professions. Diplomacy is more than “saying nothing beautifully”.

It is a principal means of communication between nations. Diplomacy can be flexible and creative. The art of interpreting a society and its peoples, understanding their motives and motivations, and conveying those accurately to one’s own Government is essential for a diplomat. Knowing how to communicate messages and instructions from one’s own Government to the Government of a host country is the companion art.

In The Moscow News publication “Russia, Diplomatically Speaking” senior diplomats from a range of countries represented in Moscow draw on their collective experience to set Russia into a global context. Given the rapid emergence of Russia as a leading global political and economic power, their insights will be valuable to all those interested in the future directions of this great country, ways of dealing with the Russians in a business and everyday context.

The book editor is Stuart Prior, New Zealand Ambassador to Russia 2003-2006, Chairman, Prior Group.

Russia’s year as APEC host will spotlight the rapid development of Russia’s links with the dynamically growing Asia/Pacific region. It will showcase the Pacific face of Russia and will highlight the unique role of Russia as a bridge between the economies of Europe and of the Pacific.

In the English and Russian languages, the publication will highlight some of the key social, cultural and historical features and values of Russia, Russian character and mindset which inform Russia’s approach to international trade and economic relations.

The book is aimed at foreign managers and their Russian business partners, whether businessmen, officials or politicians. It will undoubtedly be of interest to a much broader Russian and foreign readership among those whose imagination is captured by Russia and all that this magnificent country represents.

“Russia, Diplomatically Speaking” will be published in December 2011.

Questions which diplomats answer include:


What have been your strongest impressions about Russia?
What have been your strongest impressions about the peoples who live in Russia?
How has your family adapted to life in Russia?
What was the thing which you found most unexpected about Russia?
What has been the most difficult problem you have encountered in Russia? How has it been resolved?
What experience has pleased you most?
What have you found most disappointing?
When the people of your country think of "Russia" what stereotypes and images immediately come to mind?
What do you see as the most distinctive characteristics of Russians as people?
What do you think is the self-image of Russians? is it positive, negative, defensive, arrogant??
How can Russia, and Russians, show themselves and their societies more effectively to foreigners?

Doing Business

What are the most important specific features of the Russian way of doing business with international partners?
What do you see as some of the main socio-economic developments in Russia over the next five-ten years?
How important are history and culture to understanding how Russians work today?
If asked to give businessmen from your country three pieces of advice about how to work successfully in Russia, what would they be?

Russia on the World Stage

In your view, how could Russia improve the effectiveness of its work with international partners?
Over the next 10-15 years, in what areas do you see Russia making the most impact in the international political arena?

To pre-order please email Marina Vinogradova at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Tel.+7 (495) 645 6403



Russia - New Zealand Video

To see the video of Stuart Prior, Prior Group Chairman, talking to National Business Review about Russia - New Zealand business opportunities please go to

Russia - New Zealand Quotes

Russia is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.Winston Churchill, 1939
I myself prefer my New Zealand eggs for breakfast. Elizabeth II
Я никогда до этого не была в Новой Зеландии. Но одним из образцов подражания для меня всегда была Зена, королева воинов, она родилась там. Мадлен Олбрайт, 1995

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Russia - New Zealand History

Every day that we were there the Zealanders would arrive at our sloops at about 10 in the morning and would remain until evening. Having traded their goods they would have lunch with us. They ate our dry bread, peas, kasha and sugar with real appetite. They did not like our salt beef at all and were not great fans of the pork, nor were they able to drink our rum and wine. From time to time they would help our sailors in their work, for which the hardest workers would be rewarded with nails. Sometimes, making merry, they would give us the pleasure of watching their dances and listening to their songs. For this, about 15 men would stand in a single line. One of them, stamping his foot, would begin to sing. In mid-verse there would suddenly be a common, quite quick and wild shout, then they would lift their arms up, extend them, and let them fall, while strongly stamping their feet, distorting their whole bodies and making fierce faces. They would finish this song by going down on one knee and making a frightful, lingering laugh. Our sailors adopted their dance and song very well indeed, and on our sloop at the South Pole where the daily dangers depressed the spirit, they would sometimes cheer everybody up with their imitation (of the haka - translated by Prior Group). N.Galkin, surgeon on board the Russian vessel “Mirny” (Peaceful), during their stay in New Zealand, Queen Charlotte Sound, Russian Expedition, 1820

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