Fringe Diplomacy explores the space just beyond the boundaries of states and governments’ capacity and authority in international relations. Fringe diplomacy expands what is possible between communities and nations. It relies on individual citizens, communities, businesses, universities, artists and NGOs to occupy the space where governments cannot go.

Fringe Diplomacy is focused on smart, strategic and meaningful human interaction and engagement. Fringe brings together some of the most curious, creative and innovative individuals to engage in exchange, conversation and build opportunities for partnership and investment in emerging markets around the world.

Fringe Diplomacy People

Partnership opportunity delegation (PODs)

Fringe Diplomacy is currently and predominantly focused on Partnership Opportunity Delegations (PODs). PODs are small, focused delegation exchanges aimed at creating business, entrepreneurship and investment opportunities in communities often left without the benefits of commercial and business engagement. PODs result in direct investments and partnerships. By integrating investors, business executives and social enterprises, PODs create a powerful engagement package and an unprecedented and effective experience.

unique offerings


Our unique model is rooted in deep and personal engagement; and in so, provides participants opportunities for meaningful encounters with potential partners in a non-traditional and welcoming environment.


PODs lower the barriers to entry and transactional costs for businesses and investors by providing them the access and platform to explore opportunities at a fraction of what it would cost them if they went at it alone.


Each POD is unique and determined by the preference and priority of the local community. This, in turn, creates local ownership and accountability and results in a more conducive environment to forming business partnerships.


Through program design, PODs enable its participants unique access to partners both in the local community as well as the community of POD participants. Many intra-POD partnerships have developed out of the shared experience, thus far.


Facilitating partnerships in emerging markets requires significant resources beyond an initial exchange. Following every POD, there is an infrastructure dedicated to following up, supporting and deal closing. This infrastructure includes Aspen’s Global Alliances Program, the Global Partnership Initiative (GPI) at the Department of State, and other partner entities.


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