ISEN is the institution that, in Argentina, is in charge of the training of the members of the Foreign Service of the Nation. This requires the selection of the applicants for the Diplomatic Career, their intensive training during an initial two-year cycle and their professional updating throughout the career. The Institute pursues these objectives through the following instances:
Promotion of the Carrer | The ISEN carries out an intense activity to encourage intrest in the diplomatic-consular career, through face-to-face and virtual talks at various universities and institutions. This seeks to guarantee federalism, gender equality and professional diversity of the members of the Foreign Service. This line of actions has been reinforced by the launching of the Diplomacia Criolla podcast, developed by a group of young Embassy Secretaries.
Entry Contest | In addition to being a transparent selection mechanism, the ISEN Annual Public Admission Competition is the first of its the formative instances. This contest consists of 3 stages: a psychological assessment, a set of written tests and a diplomatic aptitude interview. Year after year, the ISEN updates the programs of the subjects.
Training Course | Those who are selected in the contest enter ISEN as candidates to the diplomatic career. Within this framework, they must take an intensive two-year training course. This course requires compulsory training in two languages and a series of professional practices in dependencies of the Ministry. Those who comply with all the obligations of the training course enter the Diplomatic Career in the rank of third party secretaries.
Oath Ceremony | Those who enter the Diplomatic Career have the obligation to take an oath to the Nation and the National Constitution. This oath is taken in a ceremony headed by the President of the Nation and organized together with ISEN. During this ceremony, the ISEN awards the prizes to the two candidates with the highest grades (gold and silver medals) as well as the following six distinctions: "Miguel Ángel Cárcano", for the best grades in international politics; "José María Ruda", for the best grades in public international law; "Elena Holmberg", for the best grades in diplomatic practice; "Leopoldo Hugo Tettamanti", for the best grades in Argentine economic and commercial policy; "Raúl Prebisch", for the best grades in economics and international economics; and "Rufino De Elizalde", for the best grades in consular subjects.
Professional Update Course | Those who reach the rank of first secretaries must take and approve a professional course, which is a requirement for promotion to the next rank. This virtual and intensive program is made up of seminars, workshops and conferences that aim to provide an update on knowledge and skills relevant to diplomatic-consular work, as well as to transmit the work guidelines of the different areas that make up the Ministry.
Professional Thesis | Those who work as counselors must prepare a professional thesis for the purposes of their promotion to the next rank, that is, that of second class minister. For these purposes, it is mandatory to attend a methodological workshop for the preparation of the thesis, offered by the ISEN in virtual mode. After approval of the workshop, they can present their thesis, which must be defended at the ISEN, before a 3 diplomats from the highest ranks of the career. This works allow to systematize the experience of the members of the Foreign Service who are averaging their careers and constitute a wealth of knowledge and reflections of high value for the remaining officials of the Foreign Service.
Language Courses | The Foreign Ministry recognizes 9 languages of interest for the performance of diplomatic-consular tasks: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Russian. Both the ISEN students and the diplomatic officers have the obligation to study and certify their knowledge in several of these languages in order to advance in their careers. Consequently, ISEN offers four-month courses in all these languages in line with the levels of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).
ISEN was created in 1963, after various efforts to institutionalize the country's diplomatic and consular training. Among its main antecedents and milestones are:
1. The laws of the diplomatic and consular service sanctioned in the year 1905, during the presidency of Manuel Quintana. Although these laws did not include a section on diplomatic-consular training, the regulations decreed by President José Figueroa Alcorta the following year, required that applicants for a diplomatic career pass a series of courses on law, politics, and geography, taught by the Buenos Aires' University.
2. The 1919 ministerial resolution that, during the government of Hipólito Yrigoyen, invited Ministry and Foreign Service personnel to attend courses offered by national universities related on the subject matter of diplomatic and consular work.
3. The establishment in 1922, in the city of Rosario, of a Degree for the Diplomatic Service and another Degree for the Consular Service in the National University of the Litoral. The first of these became in 1927 a Doctorate in Diplomacy.
4. The foundation in 1948 of the School of Diplomacy, dependent on the Ministry of International Relations and Worship during the administration of Juan Perón. This School, renamed in 1950 as the School of International Politics, was the first academic institution created at the Foreign Ministry, which guaranteed entry into the ranks of the Foreign Service.
5. The creation of the ISEN, in 1963, under the provisional government of Luis María Guido. Decree-Law 2,707 establishes the exams to take to enter the Institute and the regulations for those who were to be trained to enter the diplomatic-consular career.
6. The enactment, in 1975, of the Law on the Foreign Service of the Nation still in force (No. 20,957). During the government of Isabel Martínez de Perón, the current Organic Law of the Foreign Service of the Nation was sanctioned. There, a specific chapter dedicated to ISEN, which establishes its competence in the selection and training of members of the Foreign Service of the Nation.
7. The issuance, in 1987, of the corresponding regulatory decree. During the government of President Raúl Alfonsín, the aforementioned decree regulates the different selection and training instances that ISEN is in charge of.
The Institute of the Foreign Service of the Nation under the provisions of Foreign Service Law (No. 20,957) and regulated by Decree No. 1,973/86.
This regulatory framework is composed by the Regulations of the National Foreign Service Institute, approved by RESOL-2021-221-APN#MRE, as well as additional Ministerial Resolutions, Provisions of the Director of the Institute and amending regulations.
Regime of the Foreign Service of the Nation [Law No. 20,957]
Decree of the Law of the Foreign Service of the Nation [Decree No. 1.973/86]
ISEN Regulation [RESOL-2021-221-APN-MRE]
Resolution on Language Accreditation [RESOL-2016-595- APN-MRE]
Per current regulations, the Institute is directed by an official of category "A" of the permanent active body of the Foreign Service of the Nation. Likewise, the Institute has a Deputy Director, also in charge of an official of the permanent active body of the Foreign Service of the Nation. The governing body is completed with a Directorate of Academic Affairs.
The current authorities of the Institute are:
- The Director of the Institute, Ambassador Eduardo Lionel Demayo
- The Deputy Director of the Institute, Minister Rodrigo López Gadano
- The Director of Academic Affairs of the Institute, Dr Luciano Ezequiel Nosetto
Since its creation, the Institute has been under the direction of the following Officials:
- Ambassador ROBERTO LEVILLIER (1963-1964)
- Ambassador CESAR DIAZ CISNEROS (1964-1966)
- Ambassador MAXIMO ETCHECOPAR (1966-1970)
- Ambassador FEDERICO EZEQUIEL PEREYRA (1970-1971)
- Ambassador RODOLFO MUÑOZ (1971-1972)
- Ambassador EDUARDO TOMAS PARDO (1972-1973)
- Ambassador ROBERTO TISCORNIA (1973-1976)
- Ambassador JOSE M. ALVAREZ DE TOLEDO (1976-1979)
- Ambassador JULIO CESAR CARASALES (1979-1982)
- Ambassador FRANCISCO J. PULIT (1982-1984)
- Ambassador ROBERTO GUYER (1984-1986)
- Minister JOSE I. GARCIA GHIRELLI (1986-1987)
- Ambassador LILIANA O'CONNELL of ALURRALDE (1986/7-1991)
- Ambassador LEOPOLDO TETTAMANTI (1991-1991)
- Ambassador DANIEL OLMOS (1991-1993)
- Minister JOSE MARIA CANTILO (1993-1994)
- Ambassador HECTOR SUBIZA (1993-1994)
- Minister ANA BERTA de ALBERTO (1994-1994)
- Ambassador VICTOR E. BEAUGÉ (1994-1997)
- Ambassador FEDERICO ERHART DEL CAMPO (1997-1999)
- Ambassador JOSE RAMON SANCHIS MUÑOZ (2000-2004)
- Ambassador HORACIO BASABE (2004-2011)
- Ambassador CARLOS PIÑEYRO IÑIGUEZ (2011-2011)
- Ambassador SILVIA MEREGA (2012-2013)
- Ambassador JUAN CARLOS VALLE RALEIGH (2013-2016)
- Ambassador MARIA CELESTE KOCH (2016-2018)
- Ambassador FERNANDO PETRELLA (2018-2019)
- Ambassador EDUARDO ZUAIN (2020-2021)
- Ambassador EDUARDO DEMAYO (2021-Act)