Selection and commentary by PDC members and authoritative experts in the field
Tuesday, May 3rd 2011
It was about ten days after the disputed Iranian presidential election of 2009. New York Times correspondent Nazila Fathi, then based in Tehran, recalls that the regime was cracking down on cell phone use as demonstrations protesting President Ahmedinijad’s announced victory continued to grow. Access via cell phones and social media was increasingly problematic.
Monday, May 2nd 2011
“Exchange 2.0” drew a hundred or so to the U.S. Institute of Peace’s new building in Foggy Bottom to review the emerging world of educational and cultural exchanges online. The heart of the conference wasn’t the “2.0.” The technology demonstrated was basic. It was the participants and their stories that made an impression on me. A useful monograph was distributed, but I can’t find it online. Read on for my personal account.
Wednesday, April 27th 2011
Public diplomacy happens every day, all over the United States, as some 80 thousand American volunteers host foreign exchange visitors in their cities and homes. Ask the National Council for International Visitors, which celebrated 50 years of hosting foreign exchange participants. The National Meeting held in Washington last February brought major recognition: letters from Secretary Clinton and other senior officials: commemorative resolutions from the House and the Senate; and fascinating stories like the ones narrated by broadcaster Garrick Utley and Council Member Sherry Mueller, the NCIV President, in a seven-minute video.
Tuesday, April 26th 2011
There has been very little comment about the decision to take America.gov off the Internet.
Yes, the iconic website that was so proudly hailed by Under Secretary Karen Hughes in early 2008 is now archived. Hughes was pleased that she was able to wrest the name from the Department of the Interior -- which was, to be frank, not particularly making use of it. At the time, it seemed fitting (and about time!) that America's public diplomacy had an eponymous name for its website.
Tuesday, April 26th 2011
The Public Diplomacy Council pays tribute to the life and distinguished career of Barry Zorthian, a senior USIA Foreign Service officer in India in the early 1960s who later was the chief U.S. government spokesman in Saigon at the height of the Vietnam War. In retirement, Mr. Zorthian served as president of the Public Diplomacy Foundation of George Washington University, predecessor of this Council.