Issue #73

Bruce Gregory's Resources on Diplomacy's Public Dimension

January 14, 2015

Robert Albro and Bill Ivey, eds., Cultural Awareness in the Military: Developments and Implications for Possible Future Humanitarian Cooperation, (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014).  These essays, compiled by Albro (American University) and Ivey (former chair, National Endowment for the Arts), examine the US military's efforts to improve its cultural expertise in the context of humanitarian, counterinsurgency, and peacekeeping operations.  In their introduction, Albro and Ivey discuss three modalities that provide common ground in addressing the military's cultural awareness: (1) institutionalization of military cultural education and training, (2) institutionalization of cultural heritage management and protection, and (3) assessments of current approaches and lessons learned.  The volume is especially useful for the authors' discussion of the meanings of culture, cultural diplomacy, and the instrumental uses of cultural knowledge

Broadcasting Board of Governors, Fiscal Year 2014 Performance and Accountability Report, November 17, 2014.  The BBG's annual report includes information on the organizational structures and missions of US international broadcasting services, strategic and management objectives, program goals and performance metrics, audience levels, and financial statements.  The report provides the BBG's account of its accomplishments and future challenges.

Steve Coll, “The Unblinking Stare: The Drone War in Pakistan,” The New Yorker, November 24, 2014, pp. 98-109.  Coll (Columbia Journalism School) examines moral, policy, and public perception issues in the US use of armed drones in Pakistan and their implications for the conflict with ISIS.  His account is based in part on interviews with residents in North Waziristan and US and Pakistani officials.  Coll discusses arguments for drones based on their greater precision than piloted aircraft and cruise missiles and concerns raised by lack of transparency and accountability for civilian casualties on the part of the US and Pakistan governments.  In the conflict with ISIS, Coll argues, civilian casualties “constitute a front in a social media contest over justice and credibility."

“Does Soft Power Really Matter?” A CPD-BBC Forum, CPD Monitor, USC Center on Public Diplomacy, Volume 7, Issue 1, Fall 2014.  Given recent events in Ukraine and the Middle East, rivalries in the South China Sea, and other instances of the uses of hard power, is soft power still relevant?  What is the nature and usefulness of American soft power?  The BBC hosted a panel to discuss these questions at USC's Center for Public Diplomacy on October 2, 2014.  Panelists: Ritula Shah (BBC presenter), P. J. Crowley (George Washington University), Robert Kaufman (Pepperdine University), Olga Oliker (RAND), and Jay Wang (USC Center on Public Diplomacy).

Robert Ford, “4th Annual Walter Roberts Lecture,” Institute for Public Diplomacy and Global Communication, George Washington University, November 12, 2014.  Former US Ambassador to Syria and Algeria Robert Ford talks about his public diplomacy experiences, use of social media, the value of educational exchanges and English teaching, the role of digital diplomacy in the conflict with ISIS, and other issues.  Following his lecture, Ford engaged in a lively Q&A with Frank Sesno (director of GW's School of Media and Public Affairs).  A transcript and 90-minute Youtube video are available online. Teachers looking for a classroom aid on what it means to be an “entrepreneurial diplomat” in today's world will find Ford's stories of five lessons learned during the first half hour of the video an excellent resource.  See also GW Public Diplomacy Fellow Patricia Kabra's summary in “Five Lessons from a Public Diplomacy-savvy Ambassador,” Take Five Blog, November 19, 2014. 

Guy J. Golan, Sung-un Yang, and Dennis F. Kinsey, eds., International Public Relations and Public Diplomacy: Communication and Engagement, (Peter Lang, 2014). The twenty-four essays in this volume, compiled by Golan (Syracuse University), Yang (Indiana University), and Kinsey (Syracuse University), address conceptual and practical issues in global relationship building, stakeholder engagement, mediated public diplomacy, international broadcasting, disapora relationships, nation branding, international exchanges, and other topics. Includes: 

  • Guy J. Golan/Sung-Un Yang, “Introduction: The Integrated Public Diplomacy Perspective Foundations.”

  • Michael D. Schneider, “U.S. Public Diplomacy Since 9/11: The Challenges of Integration.” 

  • Olga Zatepilina-Monacell, “Public Diplomacy in NGOs.” 

  • Sarabdeep K. Kochhar/ Juan-Carlos Molleda, “The Evolving Links Between International Public Relations and Corporate Diplomacy.” 

  • Nancy Snow, “Public Diplomacy and Public Relations: Will the Twain Ever Meet?” 

  • Eyun-Jung Ki, “Application of Relationship Management to Public Diplomacy.” 

  • Jangyul Robert Kim, “Application of Issues and Crisis Management to Public Diplomacy.” 

  • Kelly Vibber/Jeong-Nam Kim, “Diplomacy in a Globalized World: Focusing Internally to Build Relationships Externally.” 

  • Kristi S. Gilmore/Richard D. Waters, “Stewardship and the Political Process: Improving the Political Party-Constituent Relationship Through Public Relations.” 

  • Hua Jiang, “Ethical Visions for Public Diplomacy as International Public Relations - Nation Brands and Country Reputation.” 

  • Simon Anholt, “Public Diplomacy and Competitive Identity: Where's the Link?” 

  • Kineta Hung, “Repairing the «Made-in-China» Image in the U.S. and U.K.: Effects of Government-supported Advertising.” 

  • Colleen Connolly-Ahern/Lian Ma, “Taking It to the Streets: The Evolving Use of VNRs as a Public Diplomacy Tool in the Digital Age.” 

  • Shawn Powers/Tal Samuel-Azran, “Conceptualizing International Broadcasting as Information Intervention.” 

  • Bruce W. Dayton/Dennis F. Kinsey, “Contextual Meaning.” 

  • Vanessa Bravo, “The Importance of Diaspora Communities as Key Publics for National Governments Around the World.” 

  • Aimei Yang, “Soft Power, NGOs and Virtual Communication Networks: New Strategies and Directions for Public Diplomacy.” 

  • Juyan Zhang/Shahira Fahm, “Live Tweeting at Work: The Use of Social Media in Public Diplomacy.” 

  • Jisk a Englebert/Jacob Groshek, “Relations of Populism: An International Perspective of Public Diplomacy Trends.” 

  • Margaret G. Hermann, “Presidents, Approval Ratings, and Standing: Assessing Leaders' Reputations.” 

  • James Pamment, “A Contextualized Interpretation of PD Evaluation.”

  • Brenda Wrigley, “Tenets of Diversity: Building a Strategy for Social Justice in Public Diplomacy.” 

  • Mohan J. Dutta, “Public Diplomacy, Public Relations, and the Middle East: A Culture-Centered Approach to Power in Global Contexts.” 

  • Guy J. Golan, “Conclusion: An Integrated Approach to Public Diplomacy.”

Linwood Ham, “Risk for Diplomats, AID Workers in Conflict Zones: Setting the Bar,” US Institute of Peace, November 6, 2014.   Ham (USIP's Director of Intergovernmental Affairs) summarizes key judgments expressed in an event on October 24, 2014 co-hosted by the US Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy, the Truman National Security Project, and the McCain Institute for International Leadership.  (1) Diplomatic “risk is inherent and should be managed before, during, and after civilian deployments.”  (2) Diplomats understand and accept that risk comes with the job.  (3) Leaders must explain to Congress and the American people the reasons for risks and what is done to minimize dangers to civilians in public diplomacy.  The website also links to complete event webcast and a 41-minute video of the keynote address on “Risk, Recruitment, and Retention” byAmbassador Ryan C. Crocker. 

Shane Harris, @War: The Rise of the Military-Internet Complex, (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014).  HarrisForeign Policy Magazine provides an informed and well-written overview of cyberspace as a domain of warfare, espionage, diplomacy, finance, and commerce.  His analysis of political and strategic issues is useful for diplomatic practitioners and course topics on diplomacy and cyberspace.  Among the issues discussed:  the use of cyber campaigns for propaganda purposes; Stuxnet as an act of sabotage; the State Department's Internet Freedom policy and diplomatic pressures on China; US campaigns to undermine use of anonymity routing software such as Tor while simultaneously encouraging its use by democracy activists; and the implications of Presidential Decision Directive/PPD 20 on “U.S. Cyber Operations Policy.”  Harris makes clear that although US rhetoric emphasizes cyber defense, it has acted aggressively in cyberspace in partnership with US corporations.

Robert Martinage, “Under the Sea: The Vulnerability of the Commons,” Foreign Affairs, January / February 2015, pp. 117-125.  As diplomats and soldiers focus on threats by state and non-state actors in cyberspace, Martinage (Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments) calls attention to the vulnerable and critically important physical infrastructure that enables cyberspace.  Some 95 percent of international communication travels on the seabed in fiber optic cables that make landfall in a relatively small number of locations most of which can be found on the Internet.  Martinage examines a variety of policy, legal, and diplomatic measures that address the vulnerabilities of transoceanic submarine cables as well as rapidly expanding deep-water oil and gas drilling structures.

Ellen Mickiewicz, No Illusions: The Voices of Russia's Future Leaders, (Oxford University Press, 2014).  Drawing on focus group interviews with 108 students at three top Russian universities, Mickiewicz (Duke University) assesses their thinking on “international relations, neighboring countries, domestic and international media, democratic movements, and their government.”  She argues their mindsets reflect “their total immersion in the world of the internet” and views that are often contradictory, passive, and skeptical of politics -- views that separate them from the current generation of Russia's leaders and much of the country.  Mickiewicz also looks broadly at Russia's protest and political movements and speculates on how the next generation of Russian leaders may be different from today's.  For a critical review essay on No Illusions, see Sarah Mendelson,“Generation Putin: What to Expect From Russia's Future Leaders,” Foreign Affairs, January/February 2015, pp. 150-155.  

Evan Osnos, “The Land of the Possible: Samantha Power has the President's ear.  To what End?” The New Yorker, December 22 & 29, 2014, 90-107.  Osnos (New Yorker staff writer) portrays the life, thinking, and influence of the US Ambassador to the United Nations.  Useful for its assessment of the way Power influences policy formulation, frames public argument, and manages her personal beliefs and diplomatic responsibilities.

P. W. Singer and Allan Friedman, Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know, (Oxford University Press, 2014).  Singer and Friedman (Brookings Institution) provide a clear guide to basic conceptual and practitioner issues in “all this cyber stuff.”  Terms, technologies, actors, and key variables grounded in academic research are presented in a lively way for general audiences.  Examples and anecdotes make complex technical issues accessible.  The authors are especially helpful in framing differences between physical and virtual words in governance, politics, diplomacy, and warfare.  A useful primer for teachers and students developing diplomacy case studies that relate to cyber crime, cyber espionage, cyber terrorism and counterterrorism, the lessons of Stuxnet, the limits of the state in cyber security, public-private partnerships, the pros and cons of a cyber treaty, and the future of the Internet Corporation on Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

Anne-Marie Slaughter, “The Twilight of the Statesman,” The New Republic, November 24 & December 6, 2014, 118-123.  In her lengthy review of Henry Kissinger's recent book, World Order, Slaughter (New America) offers a strong critique of his traditional idealist / realist dichotomy that draws a straight line from Jefferson to Wilson for the former and from Theodore Roosevelt to himself for the latter.  She critically dissects his challenge to key aspects of Obama's foreign policy.  Slaughter is particularly unhappy with Kissinger's exclusive and “radically insufficient” devotion to a state-centric model.  In a 400-page book on world order, he manages to avoid any mention of "climate change, pandemics, poverty, illiteracy, global criminal networks, energy, genocide, atrocities, and women.”  On the plus side she bestows high praise on his erudite assessments of leaders, countries, and concepts of world order before the Westphalian system.  (Diplomacy scholars will find Kissinger's chapter dealing with cyber technology and digital diplomacy useful, although he continues unhelpfully to conflate diplomacy and foreign policy.)

Richard Norton Smith, On His Own Terms: A Life of Nelson Rockefeller, (Random House, 2014).  In this monumental 842-page biography, Smith (historian and former director of several presidential libraries) has written a colorful and deeply researched portrayal of a 20th century American who in a lifetime of public service did much to shape the nation's approach to public diplomacy.  He provides a detailed account of Rockefeller's role as Coordinator of Inter-American Affairs (CIAA) and his influence on US information and cultural activities in Latin America, media relations, pre-VOA shortwave radio broadcasts, educational and citizen exchanges, and foreign assistance programs before and during World War II.  He portrays his relationship with Franklin Roosevelt, his interagency battles with the State Department and Wild Bill Donovan's Office of Strategic Services, and a Rockefeller who was equally comfortable dealing with the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Disney Studios, Gallup pollsters, and the international activities of the AFL-CIO.  Smith provides detailed insights into Rockefeller's vaguely defined responsibilities in Eisenhower's White House -- “to tell the story of America” and “to explain its values” -- and his leadership in developing one of public diplomacy's countless advisory reports, “Psychological Aspects of United States Strategy.”  Based on more than 200 interviews and thousands of newly available documents, On His Own Terms is a welcome supplement to Cary Reich's pathbreaking The Life of Nelson A. Rockefeller: Worlds To Conquer, 1908-1958.

“Teaching Diplomacy Across the Divide,” The Foreign Service Journal, January-February 2015.  As FSJ editor Shawn Dorman puts it in her “Letter from the Editor: Crossing the Divide of Mutual Understanding,” the spark for the Journal's focus on teaching diplomacy in this issue came from her conversation with Donna Oglesby (Eckerd College) at the 2013 International Studies Association convention in Toronto.  Oglesby's research on substantial differences in how scholars and practitioners teach diplomacy led Dorman to compile four articles, three by former diplomats with extensive teaching experience and one scholar.  They provide important and informed insights into the divide and whether it can and should be bridged.  

-- Barbara K. Bodine (Georgetown University), “Teaching Diplomacy as Process (Not Event): A Practitioner's Song,” 21-26. Bodine writes about her experiences as a diplomat teaching in academe, her understanding of diplomacy's constitutive elements, the roles of scholars and practitioners, and approaches to bridging the gap through case studies and policy task forces/workshops.    

-- Donna Oglesby, “Diplomacy Education Unzipped,” 27-32.  Grounded in extensive research on 60 US diplomacy course syllabi and lengthy interviews with teachers, Oglesby's article goes well beyond assessment of wide variety in course content and in the experiences and disciplines of academics and practitioners teaching diplomacy.  She explores implications of her findings for understanding American diplomatic practice, lack of support for diplomacy in the main institutions of American society, and what the future might hold for diplomacy as a profession and field of study.

-- Robert Dry (New York University), “Diplomacy Works: A Practitioner's Guide to Recent Books,” 34-37.  Dry surveys a “new high water mark” in literature on diplomacy that goes beyond memoirs and diplomatic history to provide rich context for current diplomatic practice as a separate instrument of power.  His selected noteworthy publications include: Cooper, Heine, and Thakur, eds.,  The Oxford Handbook of Modern Diplomacy (2013), Roberts, ed., Satow's Diplomatic Practice (1917, 2011), Berridge, Diplomacy in Theory and Practice (2010), Pigman, Contemporary Diplomacy (2011), Sharp and Wiseman, eds.,American Diplomacy (2012), Copeland, Guerrilla Diplomacy (2009), the website of USC's Center on Public DiplomacyThe Hague Journal of Diplomacy, and his “hands-down favorite” Kerr and Wiseman, eds., Diplomacy in a Globalizing World: Theories and Practices (2012).

-- Paul Sharp (University of Minnesota Duluth), “Practitioners, Scholars and The Study of Diplomacy,” 39-41.  Despite pressures to the contrary, Sharp finds that “the study of diplomacy remains on the margins of consciousness for both diplomats and international relations academics.”  Should this be a cause for concern?  No, he argues.  Each side should glance occasionally at the other, but not worry if the relationship between them is not close. 

US Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy, Comprehensive Annual Report on Public Diplomacy and International Broadcasting Activities, December 11, 2014.  This 258-page report, written by the Commission's Executive Director Katherine Brown and her staff, itemizes major public diplomacy and international broadcasting activities conducted by the US Department of State and Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG).  The report describes and provides budget information on overseas missions and Washington-based programs.  Its 13 findings and 35 detailed recommendations focus on the State Department overall; State's Office of Policy Planning and Resources, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Bureau of International Programs, Bureau of Public Affairs, Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications, and Africa Bureau; mission-specific activities in the Czech Republic, Germany, Mexico, Ukraine, and Vietnam; and the BBG.  There is a separate 15-page executive summary.  Commission members include Chairman William J. Hybl, Sim Farar, Lyndon L. Olson, Jr., Penne Korth Peacock, Lezlee Westine, and Anne Terman Wedner. 

John W. Young, David Bruce and Diplomatic Practice: An American Ambassador in London, 1961-9, (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2014).  During his long diplomatic career as a political appointee, David Bruce served as US Ambassador to France, Germany, and the UK; Chief of the US Liaison Office of the Peoples Republic of China; and US Permanent Representative to NATO.  In this book, Young (University of Nottingham, UK) examines his lengthy service in London.  It is a well written portrayal of the daily activities of a highly accomplished non-career ambassador, the changing roles of ambassadors and resident embassies, and the foreign policy decisions of the US and British governments.  Young's deeply researched account is particularly useful for its treatment of Bruce's approach to media relations, summit diplomacy, the Fulbright program and cultural relations, and his varied and often critical views on the effectiveness of US public diplomacy and activities of the US Information Agency.

Recent Blogs and Other Items of Interest

Michael H. Anderson, “Ben Bradlee - The Reluctant Public Diplomacy Officer,” November 16, 2014, Public Diplomacy Council.

Donald M. Bishop, “Why Public Diplomacy," Remarks at 2014 US-Korea Public Diplomacy Workshop, Busan, ROK," November 19, 2014, Public Diplomacy Council.

Robin Brown, “Why Isn't Germany More Unpopular? (Is Angela Merkel the Answer?)," January 7, 2015; “Counter-Propaganda: Do I Detect a Propaganda Panic™?” December 16, 2014; “Counter-Propaganda in the Digital Age: Introduction,” December 8, 2014; “Soft Power: Attractiveness and Influence,” November 25, 2014; “Regulating Foreign Public Diplomacy," November 4, 2014, Public Diplomacy, Networks and Influence Blog.

Joe Davidson, “Agency Few Americans Use Generates Controversy, This Time With Contractors,” November 24, 2014, The Washington Post.

Vindu Goel and Andrew E. Kramer, “Web Freedom Is Seen As a Growing Global Issue,” January 1, 2015, The New York Times.

Alec Luhn, “Ex-Soviet Countries on Front Line of Russia's Media War With the West,” January 6, 2015, The Guardian.

Ilan Manor and Elad Segev, “Framing, Tweeting, and Branding: A Study in the Practice of Digital Diplomacy,” January 9, 2015, USC Center on Public Diplomacy Blog.

Amy Minsky, “What is 'Digital Diplomacy'?” January 11, 2015, Global News.

Lisa Millar, “China's State Broadcaster Struggles to Silence Criticism It Is a Propaganda Machine,” November 17, 2014, Yahoo News.

Joseph S. Nye, “Putin's Rules of Attraction,” December 12, 2014, Project Syndicate.

Yelena Osipova, “Russia's Public Diplomacy: In Search of Recognition (Part 1),” November 3, 2014; “Russia's Public Diplomacy: In Search of Recognition (Part 2),” November 5, 2014, CPD Blog, USC Center on Public Diplomacy.

Gary Rawnsley, “BBC Interview With Xu Lin About Confucius Institutes,” December 22, 2014; “Lipstick on a Pig: America's Soft Power is Recoverable,” December 16, 2014, Public Diplomacy and International Communications Blog.

Brett Daniel Shehadey, “Does America Need a BBC?” December 19, 2014, In Homeland Security Blog.

Matthew Wallin, “The Year(s) Ahead in Public Diplomacy,” December 16, 2014, American Security Project blog.

Micah Zenko, “The Myth of the Indispensable Nation,” November 6, 2014, Foreign Policy, FP Blog.

Gem from the Past

Jan Melissen, ed., The New Public Diplomacy: Soft Power in International Relations, (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005). It has been ten years since publication of this landmark collection of essays on the study and practice of public diplomacy.  Widely cited by scholars, and still required reading in university courses and foreign ministry training programs, The New Public Diplomacy was instrumental in framing the consensus view that public diplomacy has become mainstream in contemporary diplomatic practice.  It took public diplomacy beyond the post-9/11 Anglo-American discourse.  It demonstrated public diplomacy's value to a wide variety of large and small countries.  And it illuminated conceptual and theoretical possibilities in a young multi-disciplinary field of study.  As current debates look to integrative diplomacy models and what lies “beyond the new public diplomacy,” this volume remains an essential resource for scholars and practitioners.

An archive of Diplomacy's Public Dimension: Books, Articles, Websites (2002-present) is maintained at George Washington University's Institute for Public Diplomacy and Global Communication.  Current issues are also posted by the University of Southern California's Center on Public Diplomacy, Arizona State University's COMOPS Journal, and the Public Diplomacy Council