Under the presidency of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Brazil launched numerous foreign policy initiatives in Latin America and beyond, raised its profile as a mediator in regional and international conflicts, played an active role in international organizations and shaped global governance debates. In fact, one can safely say that the “Lula era” marked Brazil’s ascent in foreign policy, which was the result of a continuous expansion of external action pursued with an extraordinary amount of energy. Today, Brazilian foreign policy can no longer be reduced simply to trade policy. It has become more diversified not only in terms of its thematic and geographical scope, but also with regard to its institutional architecture and the range of policy instruments. This development went hand in hand with a shift in Brazil’s external priorities and constituted a watershed in the country’s approach towards foreign policy. What were the main trends in foreign affairs under the Lula government? How were they embedded in the broader context of international relations? These are some of the questions this study seeks to answer.