The DDSS programme has been financed by the European Commission through the Tempus programme, initially for the period 2001-2003, but financing has been extended until September 2004.
As an institution-building project, the project was coordinated by the College of Europe with partner institutions, namely the University of Zagreb and its International Centre of Croatian Universities (ICCU) in Dubrovnik, the Centre for Diplomatic Studies, University of Leicester, the Diplomatic Academy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Croatia, and the Institute for International Relations (IMO), Zagreb.
The main objective of the project consisted in setting up a regional centre for diplomatic training in Dubrovnik, enabling specialised training for diplomats from countries in transition, especially countries of the Stability Pact for South-Eastern Europe, in order to contribute to the professionalisation of their respective foreign services. The role of the College consisted of providing expertise in the design and implementation of a curriculum for an annual Summer Diplomatic Academy targeting young diplomats from Stability Pact for South-Eastern Europe countries and introducing them to the European integration process.
The first Summer Diplomatic Academy- Regional Cooperation- Multilateral Diplomacy- Diplomatic PracticBe took place in Dubrovnik, from 27 August to 15 September 2001. The second Summer Diplomatic Academy, was held in Dubrovnik from 26 August to 14 September 2002. The programme of the two first three-week editions focused on multilateral diplomacy, regional integration, and diplomatic practice.
The third and last edition of the seminar took place on 30 August-10 September 2004 in Dubrovnik, and put the emphasis on "Diplomacy and management of EU negotiations". The objective of the last edition was to gather 15 diplomats from Croatia and the whole region of South-East Europe, and train them on the specificity of EU policy-making process, negotiation strategies both at the pre-accession stage and within the EU, and related diplomatic practice. The training staff was composed of 19 trainers from outside the region, both EU practitioners and high-level academics, and 8 from the region, mostly diplomats.
Another distinct feature of this last edition was its target audience : that seminar was a "training the trainers" programme, aiming not only at developing networks among diplomats of the region and thus encouraging regional cooperation, but also at training future experts able to deliver similar training to their colleagues at their home Ministries of Foreign Affairs.
The objective of sustainability of the project was achieved since the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Croatia will run the next edition of the "Dubrovnik Diplomatic Summer School" in September 2005.