ABOUT BANDARANAIKE INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC TRAINING INSTITUTE
The Bandaranaike International Diplomatic Training Institute (BIDTI) was established in 1994 under the guidance of the Prime Minister Madam Sirimavo Bandaranaike for the object of offering advanced training courses in diplomacy & international relations in accordance with the aims of the Bandaranaike Memorial Foundation to promote international peace, understanding and cooperation through such studies, discussions and dissemination of knowledge. The task of founding the BIDTI was rested on shoulders of the late Deshamanya Dr. Vernon L. B. Mendis, who was not only its first Director General but also the first entrant to the Sri Lanka Foreign Service in 1949. His mission had been facilitated by the patronage of Her Excellency Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge, President of Sri Lanka. Dedication and hard work of Dr. Mendis paved way to launch training programmes in early 1995 not only as the training institute of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs but also conducting courses for the public.
The training programmes are highly focused on providing professional skills and encouraging discussion on global economic and political issues. Other than regular courses, the BIDTI conducts special programmes to meet the requirements of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Among those annual programme conducted under the Technical Cooperation Programme inviting diplomats from various countries, English Language Proficiency Programme and Countering Trafficking in Persons Programme take prominent place. Today, training courses conducted at the BIDTI have been sought after by people of all walks of life. Those who have successfully followed the one-year course of the Diploma in Diplomacy & World Affairs could join the Post Graduate Diploma course conduct with the collaboration of the Department of International Relations of the University of Colombo by allowing them to submit a research paper on a selected topic.
The BIDTI has a panel of eminent resource persons comprising of academics, professionals, Ambassadors both foreign & Sri Lankan, visiting scholars and professionals from the public and private sector. Special guest lectures by Ambassadors and High Commissioners accredited to Sri Lanka have become a regular feature at the BIDTI, as it gives a good opportunity to disseminate information on foreign policy of their countries and other attributes.
Since 2006, the BIDTI has been vested by Parliamentary Act No. 32 of 2006 under the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute of International Relations and Strategic Studies (LKIIRSS).