The ‘Director’s Note’ is a long standing Ditchley tradition. The Note is a record by Ditchley’s Director written after each conference discussion. There is a continuous collection of the Director's Notes from Ditchley conferences going back almost to the 1960s when Ditchley was founded, written by ten different Directors from Ditchley’s past, including the most recent by current Director, James Arroyo.
Sixty years of reports on in-depth discussions of contemporary political ideas and social change across education, technology, international relations, peace and security, democracy, freedom and world events – amongst leading figures of their times from politics, technology, academia, business, journalism, public institutions and from countries across the world, has left a unique and important archive about people, ideas and contemporary analyses that remain relevant to current debates and policy. This is all part of the heritage of Ditchley Park.
Our aim is to complete the digitalisation of the full sixty years of archived papers in 2021, thereby opening access to the incredible collection of primary sources. Notes since the 2000s can be already be found under Past Events under Programme and transcriptions of the full collection of all Ditchley’s Annual Lectures is also available now.
It is important to us that this rich history of ideas is not only preserved but also made available for education, research and indeed enjoyment. This year, original research and preparatory work on our archives across themes was begun by Ditchley’s Research Intern Team. Young people with interests in history and politics worked to research and synthesise papers on past conferences in order to understand current political change.
Taking the themes of Multilateralism; EU – US relations in the 21st Century; and Ditchley and the Media in the 21st Century, the research project has started to trace the way debates in these areas evolved to reflect changing priorities and geopolitics. There is much in the discussion and ideas from earlier conferences that is relevant today and that can be considered again in the light of contemporary political and social change. The first three papers can be found here.
By Esme Smith
US-EU Relations in the 21st Century
By Hilary Cockhill
Ditchley and the Media in the 21st Century
By Hilary Cockhill