Alliance for International Educational and Cultural Exchange. The Alliance has launched a redesigned website with new features and links. Includes Under Secretary of State Judith McHale's keynote speech at the Alliance's membership dinner on October 21, 2009.
American Political Science Association Task Force on U.S. Standing in World Affairs, U.S. Standing in the World: Causes, Consequences, and the Future, October 2009. Led by Peter J. Katzenstein (Cornell University, APSA President, 2008-09) and Jeffrey W. Legro, (University of Virginia, Task Force Chair) twenty leading American political scientists explored three questions: "1. What is standing and how has it varied? 2. What causes standing to rise and fall? 3.What impact does standing have on U.S. foreign policy?" The report is available for download online in a short version and a long version. Hard copies are available for purchase. The report includes a dissent by two task force members: Stephen Krasner (Stanford University) and Henry R. Nau (George Washington University).
For a critique of the report, see Robert J. Lieber (Georgetown University), "A Contested Analysis of America's Standing Abroad," The Chronicle of Higher Education, October 1, 2009.
Amelia Arsenault, "Public Diplomacy 2.0," Chapter 7 in Philip Seib, ed., Toward a New Public Diplomacy: Redirecting U.S. Foreign Policy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), 135-153. Arsenault (University of Pennsylvania and University of Southern California) adds to a growing literature that is examining and evaluating the implications of social media for public diplomacy practice. Her essay looks at current activities and possible new directions in the context of three trends: "(1) the technological convergence of communication networks, (2) related problems of information delivery and visibility, and (3) an incorporation of participatory and collaborative models of interaction."
John Brown, "What's Happened to anti-Americanism, and to the State Department? The Obama Administration and Public Diplomacy: March to mid-June 2009," Place Branding and Public Diplomacy, Vol. 5, 3, August 2009, 247-252. The author of John Brown's Press and Public Diplomacy Blog finds that, although President Obama has "won over overseas audiences (at least for now)," public diplomacy at "the State Department is broken and in need of serious fixing."
Daryl Copeland, "How Obama's Nobel Can Resurrect Diplomacy," Embassy Magazine, November 11, 2009, 9. Canadian diplomat Daryl Copeland sees the decision of the Nobel committee as a political signal "of support for diplomacy in general and for American presidential diplomacy in particular." The author of Guerrilla Diplomacyargues that diplomacy matters more than ever, but its institutions and practices must be "rethought from the ground up" and transformed through "relentless creativity," "tireless collaboration," and "engagement of cross cutting networks between government and civil society."
Nicholas Cull, Public Diplomacy: Lessons from the Past, CPD Perspectives on Public Diplomacy, (Figueroa Press, 2009). Cull, (Center for Public Diplomacy, University of Southern California) has republished with minor edits a report originally prepared for Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 2007. Available in hard copy and on line, the CPD's 61 page publication includes material on definitions of public diplomacy, its evolution as a concept, three taxonomies, cases of successful and unsuccessful public diplomacy, and reflections on "information age" public diplomacy.
Ali Fisher, "An Introduction to Using Network Maps in Public Diplomacy and Strategic Communication," Guest post on Matt Armstrong's MountainRunner Blog, October, 8, 2009. Fisher (director of Mappa Mundi Consulting and author of the WandrenPD.com blog) provides a brief introduction to social network analysis and the application of mapping methods to public diplomacy. Using several network graphics, he provides a basic introduction to network analysis and suggests these tools "can be used to plan, develop and evaluate engagement" and have significant potential in public diplomacy.
Bruce Gregory, "Mapping Smart Power in Multi-stakeholder Public Diplomacy / Strategic Communication,"Remarks at a forum on U.S. Global Outreach: Smart Power on the Front Lines of Public Diplomacy and Strategic Communication, The Institute for the Public Diplomacy and Global Communication, George Washington University, October 5, 2009. Brief comments and questions on concepts, challenges, and implications for scholars and practitioners.
Craig Hayden, "Public Diplomacy Debates Reflect Bigger IR Questions," Intermap Blog, October 28, 2009. Hayden (American University) reflects on the implications of central issues in international relations for the study and practice of public diplomacy: globalization, today's ICT infrastructure, erosion of traditional domains of nation-state sovereignty, new kinds of international actors, and the need for more global governance. His blog builds on his earlier assessment ("We Regret to Inform You We Don't Know What We're Doing," October 18, 2009) of issues raised in George Washington University's forum on "U.S. Global Outreach: The Implications of Smart Power for Public Diplomacy," Hayden sees a need for a new kind of diplomacy, new venues for communication, greater attention to international opinion, and leadership that "recognizes what kinds of objectives and/or policies are really the domain of public diplomacy." Includes comments by Oglesby (Eckerd College) and Steven R. Corman (Arizona State University).
Sheldon Himelfarb, Tamara Gould, Eric Martin, and Tara Sonenshine, Media as Global Diplomat, Special Report 226, United States Institute of Peace, June 2009. The USIP team summarizes the views of media professionals, diplomats, scholars, and NGO leaders convened at the Media as Global Diplomat Leadership Summit (February 2009) on how the U.S. can best use media in its public diplomacy. The report calls for a multi-directional media model that "promotes a democratic, global conversation," a decentralized approach that "builds on local partnerships that go beyond U.S. governmental broadcasting," and initiatives that "tap the potential of citizen media and citizen networks."
Ellen Huijgh, The Public Diplomacy of Federated Entities: Excavating the Quebec Model, Clingendael Diplomacy Papers No. 23, October 2009, Netherlands Institute of International Relations 'Clingendael.' This paper examines theory and practice issues in the public diplomacy of sub-state entities. Using Quebec as a case study in a tidal wave of "calls for reducing the barriers to entry into public diplomacy," she examines three tracks: (1) promotion of Quebec's cultural identity, (2) institutionalized public diplomacy through a division in the Ministry of International Relations of Quebec, and (3) domestic public diplomacy. Her essay discusses ways in which the activities of entities such as Quebec, Flanders, Catalonia, Scotland, and California are changing the study and conduct of public diplomacy. Ms. Huijgh is a Ph.D candidate pursuing research on domestic public diplomacy and a co-editor of the Clingendael Discussion Papers in Diplomacy.
Richard Ned Lebow, A Cultural Theory of International Relations, (Cambridge University Press, 2009). Lebow (Dartmouth College) in this massive study (762 pp.) offers a new paradigm for the study of politics and international relations. Grounded in classical Greek thought on the fundamental drives of spirit, appetite, and reason, Lebow argues these drives give rise to distinctive "ideal type worlds" and different forms of behavior in cooperation, conflict, and risk taking. His research is broadly multicultural and sweeping in its historical focus. His ideas privilege dialogue, interaction, norms that promote human fulfillment, and power transition within and outside the state system. Public diplomacy scholars and practitioners will find Lebow's project relevant to current thinking on networks, relational models, cultural diplomacy, and a social psychology that links identity, interest, and behavior.
Simon Mark, "A Greater Role for Cultural Diplomacy," Clingendael Discussion Papers in Diplomacy, Netherlands Institute of International Relations, April 2009. Mark (New Zealand Trade and Enterprise) argues that cultural diplomacy, long treated as a subset of public diplomacy "has the potential to become a much more powerful tool for improving a country's image and its relations with other countries" and for "domestic nation-building." His paper explores the "semantic muddle" and core elements of cultural diplomacy, its role in presenting a national image and relationship with nation building, and ways to achieve cultural diplomacy's full potential. Mark defines cultural diplomacy as "the deployment of a state's culture in support of its foreign policy goals or diplomacy."
Donna Marie Oglesby, "Statecraft at the Crossroads: A New Diplomacy," SAIS Review. Summer/Fall, Vol. 29, No. 2, 2009, 93-106. Oglesby (Eckerd College) argues that new realities and shifting power centers in international politics require a dramatic reassessment of U.S. national security strategy. Using examples (Sri Lanka, Sudan, European Union, Mexico, Afghanistan, Pakistan), she examines challenges at the nexus of foreign policy and politics within and between states. Today's global landscape calls for greater emphasis on politics and a new diplomacy in which public diplomats focus on "the political ground game" and the cultural and political particularities of human plurality.
Constance Philpot, DIME Blog, U.S. Army War College, October 2009. Constance Philpot is a senior U.S. Foreign Service Officer on detail to the Department of Defense at the U.S. Army War College. She posted five blogs on the Dime Blog relating to public diplomacy as DIME's October guest blogger. -- October 1, 2009: "Public Diplomacy vs. Strategic Communication, Pt. 1" -- October 7, 2009: "Public Diplomacy Part II" -- October 15, 2009: "Public Diplomacy III: New Media" -- October 22, 2009: "Public Diplomacy IV: Twitter Diplomacy" -- November 2, 2009: "Concluding Thoughts on Public Diplomacy"
Samantha M. Shapiro, "Can the Muppets Make Friends on the West Bank?" The New York Times Magazine, October 4, 2009, pp. 38-43. Shapiro (a contributing writer for the Magazine) describes the challenges facing New York City-based Sesame Street and its Palestinian partners in creating an international co-production for television viewers in the Palestinian territories. Profiles Palestinian writers and contains insights on the political context, Sesame's struggle to balance its core values with the production and cultural values of Palestinian co-producers, the benefits for building a Palestinian television capability, and the singular difficulties of creating a Palestinian-Israeli joint production.
"The State of Public Diplomacy: A Decade after USIA's Demise, What Next?" Foreign Service Journal, October 2009. Current and former public diplomacy practitioners look at the past, present, and future. Includes:
-- The Public Diplomacy Front Line Working Group, "Speaking Out, Public Diplomacy: A View from the Front Line," 14-17. ("We hope to start a conversation about the direction of public diplomacy among current State Department practitioners.")
-- Julie Gianelloni Connor, "PD: A View from the Promotion Panel," 18-21. ("Here are some tips to help public diplomacy officers become truly competitive with other FS cones.")
-- Joe B. Johnson, "The Next Generation," 22-28. ("Leaders of the old USIA and State have sought to adapt public diplomacy to new public expectations and the revolution in global media.")
-- William A. Rugh, "PD Practitioners: Still Second-Class Citizens," 29-34. ("Attitudes within the Foreign Service toward public diplomacy work have not warmed much a decade after State absorbed USIA.")
-- Michael McClellan, "A Holistic Approach," 35-41. ("Instead of bringing back USIA, we should utilize its best practices to restore America's PD capabilities.")
-- Monica O'Keefe and Elizabeth Corwin, "The Last Three Feet: PD as a Career," 42-46. (One reason PD officers don't get their fair share of senior jobs is that they don't compete for them. But that's far from the whole story.")
-- William P. Kiehl, "Addressing the Public Diplomacy Challenge," 47-51. ("A new agency of the Department of State -- the U.S. Public Diplomacy Service -- could ensure both creativity and accountability in PD operations.")
-- Robert McMahon, "Channeling the Cold War: U.S. Overseas Broadcasting," 52-58. ("The need for a clear mission is as applicable today in reaching Muslims around the world as it was with Soviet-bloc audiences.")
Steffen Bay Rasmussen, "Discourse Analysis of EU Public Diplomacy: Messages and Practices," Clingendael Discussion Paper in Diplomacy, Netherlands Institute of International Relations 'Clingendael,' July 2009. Rasmussen (University of the Basque Country) examines the relevance of discourse theory to the practice of public diplomacy and to the challenges facing the EU's public diplomacy and broader diplomatic efforts. He argues that the EU's delegations in third states are its most important actors in EU public diplomacy. Despite problems of coherence, networks are better suited "to current patterns of diplomatic interaction and more effective in the pursuit of EU strategic objectives than a more hierarchical organization able to speak with one voice and act in a more concerted manner."
"Revitalizing Public Diplomacy" The Journal of International Security Affairs, Number 17, Fall 2009. The Journal's fall issue contains six articles by scholars and practitioners.
-- Robert R. Reilly (American Foreign Policy Council), "No Substitute for Substance," 9-17. ("When it comes to how America interacts with the Muslim world, ideas matter.")
-- J. Michael Waller (Institute of World Politics), "Getting Serious About Strategic Influence," 19-27. ("How to move beyond the State Department's legacy of failure.")
-- Helle C. Dale (The Heritage Foundation), "An Inauspicious Start," 29-34. (If early signs are any indication, Mr. Obama is as unserious about public diplomacy as his predecessor.")
-- Ilan Berman (Editor, The Journal of International Security Affairs), "Messaging to the (Muslim) Masses," 35-46. (The Islamic world is our target audience. Here's how to reach it.")
-- Colleen Graffy (Pepperdine University), "The Rise of Public Diplomacy 2.0," 47-53. (The global media environment is changing. Public diplomacy needs to keep up.)
-- Mark Dubowitz (Foundation for Defense of Democracies), "Wanted: A War on Terrorist Media", 55-62. (We should be treating the media outlets of terrorist groups as terrorists themselves.")
Rudolf Rijgersberg, "The U.S. as Keeper of a 'Free' Internet," Clingendael Diplomatic Studies Program, Netherlands Institute of International Relations 'Clingendael,' September 10, 2009. Rijgersberg (Clingendael Research Fellow) looks at the advantages and disadvantages of the decision to separate the Internet Corporation on Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) from its relationship with the U.S government. He argues that "the current situation [prior to the September 30, 2009 separation decision] with the US as keeper of a relatively free Internet, is to be preferred to a global monopolist created by intergovernmental supervision."
Walter R. Roberts, "The Voice of America: Origins and Reflections," American Diplomacy, October 26, 2009. Roberts (a retired U.S. diplomat and scholar) recalls his experiences at the Voice of America during the early days of U.S. international broadcasting. Part memoir and part historical research, he draws on U.S. archival records, BBC documents, and other sources to assess the origins of the U.S. decision to engage in public international broadcasting. His article includes new information on the date of the first VOA broadcast and analysis of the personalities, technologies, and political issues (domestic and international) that shaped America's approach to shortwave broadcasting prior to World War II.
Mark Rolfe, "Clashing Taboos: Danish Cartoons, the Life of Brian and Public Diplomacy," The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, Vol. 4, No. 3 2009, 261-281. Rolfe (The University of New South Wales) asserts that the Danish cartoons' controversy drove reactions similar to those that followed earlier transnational disputes involving satire such as the movie Life of Brian and the Holocaust cartoons. His article looks critically at the war of ideas narrative, a focus by many on an absolute free speech principle that served the purposes of Islamists uninterested in local variations of Islam, and ways in which global media amplify taboos in such disputes and the problematic statements of political elites. Rolfe uses rhetorical analysis to unpack the complexities of the actors, audiences, and strategies in the cartoons' episode -- complexities with a relevance for public diplomacy, he suggests, that go well beyond the "war on terror" model.
Alec Ross, Technology and 21st Century Diplomacy, The Kojo Nnamdi Show, National Public Radio, September 22, 2009. In this 52-minute interview, Ross (Senior Advisor on Innovation, Department of State) discusses diplomatic uses of new media (YouTube, Twitter, Facebook) and traditional media (cell phones, radio). Available for listening online. (Courtesy of Ashley Rainey)
Nancy Snow, "The Death of Public Diplomacy is Greatly Exaggerated," Layalina Productions, Vol. 1, Issue 7, November 2009. Snow (Syracuse University) finds much to commend in President Obama's rhetoric and efforts to reshape America's image. There is a downside, however, in overreliance on the "Public Diplomat in Chief" in the White House. Public diplomacy, she asserts, is "best perceived as a symphony, not a one-man band."
U.S. Government Accountability Office, Department of State: Comprehensive Plan Needed to Address Persistent Language Shortfalls, GAO-09-955, September 2009. GAO found significant and persistent shortfalls in the assignment of language qualified Foreign Service Officers to language designated positions overseas. Worldwide, as of October 2008, 31% of State's officers did not meet reading and speaking proficiency requirements. In the Near East and South and Central Asia, the number was 40%. In Arabic and Chinese, the shortfall was 39%. GAO calls for a comprehensive strategy to help State guide its efforts and assess progress in meeting its foreign language requirements.
Gem from the Past
Akira Iriye. Cultural Internationalism and World Order, (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997). This book by the former President of the American Historical Association and Charles Warren Professor of American History at Harvard remains one of the best studies of the relationship between culture and power. Iriye examines the rise of cultural internationalism during the 19th and 20th centuries. He distinguishes between government sponsored cultural diplomacy and cultural internationalism and argues that both can be appreciated only in the context of world politics. "A lasting and stable world order," he wrote, "cannot rely just on governments and power politics; it also depends upon the open exchange of cultures among peoples in pursuing common intellectual and cultural interests."