Young African Leaders the Focus at First Monday

Joyce Warner of IREX (r) talks about the Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders, coming up this summer as part of President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI).  Britta Bjornlund (l) of the State Department's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Programs, also spoke at our First Monday talk on April 7.  Forum Organizer Adam Powell observes in the background. Read More
Photo Credit - Jesselle Macatiag Submit an image/video

PD commentary

Selection and commentary by PDC members and authoritative experts in the field

Tara Sonenshine's remarks after being sworn in as Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs by Secretary Clinton

Wednesday, April 25th 2012

Thank you, Madame Secretary. It is an honor to be here with you, today, and I am grateful for the confidence that you and President Obama have placed in me.

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One person has commented on this article so far

Brian E. Carlson

Board member


Summary: An experienced public diplomacy officer, Ambassador Brian Carlson advises the InterMedia research organization on military and foreign affairs issues and serves the State Department as a senior inspector. For the last three years he was the State Department liaison to the Department of Defense on strategic communication.

 

...click authors name for more info

Author: Brian Carlson

America: How Others See Us

Monday, April 23rd 2012

I had an opportunity recently to meet Tara Sonenshine, the newly appointed Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, and I came away both impressed and hopeful that she will bring a fresh, informed perspective to this important position.

We certainly need it.

The United States seems to have more than its share of image problems these days, from the Secret Service scandal in Colombia and the partying and flagrant disregard for the taxpayer’s dollar by the General Services Administration, to the latest batch of embarrassing photos to emerge from the Afghanistan battlefield.

All of these are public diplomacy problems in the sense that they conspicuously contradict the values of anti-corruption and human rights that we embrace for ourselves and advocate for others. So when we fall short, everybody notices.

Most Americans aren’t surprised by that. We know we’re far from perfect, and we’re also a nation that believes in forgiveness and second chances. (For proof of that, just look at our politicians.) But because of our history, our achievements, and, let’s face it, our occasional lecturing to others, we’re sometimes held to impossibly high standards.

The most surprising example of this that I ever experienced occurred in, of all places, Iran.

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One person has commented on this article so far

David S. Jackson

David Jackson is a veteran journalist and former U.S. government official with extensive multimedia communications experience in domestic and international markets.

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Author: David S Jackson

Why Not Let Diplomatic Security Do It?

Sunday, April 22nd 2012

Here’s a thought: why don't the State Department’s Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS) agents protect the President when he travels to foreign countries?

If there is a constant theme in public diplomacy, it is that the people in the field, at the embassy, know best how to do what the USG needs done.

One reason the Secret Service agents in Cartagena got caught with their pants down (metaphorically speaking) is because they were out of their element.  They were in unfamiliar, foreign territory. 

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7 people have commented on this article so far

Brian E. Carlson

Board member


Summary: An experienced public diplomacy officer, Ambassador Brian Carlson advises the InterMedia research organization on military and foreign affairs issues and serves the State Department as a senior inspector. For the last three years he was the State Department liaison to the Department of Defense on strategic communication.

 

...click authors name for more info

Author: Brian Carlson

Techie State Department: Public Diplomacy, Ediplomacy, or Just Buzz?

Friday, April 20th 2012

Have you noticed the chatter about the State Department and new media over the past month?

ITEM: After a Tumblr blog put captions on photos of Secretary Clinton wearing sunglasses, imagining text messages that she might be sending to celebrities, the Secretary didn’t protest.  She invited the authors to the State Department to meet in person.  Public diplomacy can’t buy this kind of publicity.

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One person has commented on this article so far

Joe B. Johnson

Board member

 

Joe B. Johnson consults on government communication and technology after a career in the United States Foreign Service.  He is an instructor for the National Foreign Affairs Training Center, where he teaches strategic planning for public diplomacy.

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Author: Joe Johnson

Public Diplomacy and POTUS Visits

Wednesday, April 18th 2012

The current flap over misbehaving Secret Service agents in Cartagena is worth not much more than an amused “tsk-tsk” to most Americans.

But, in fact, this incident underlines a problem faced by public diplomacy officers every time and every place the President travels.  There are simply too many people involved in Presidential travel.  And many of them have not much real work to do, which leaves them lots of time to get into mischief.

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One person has commented on this article so far

Brian E. Carlson

Board member


Summary: An experienced public diplomacy officer, Ambassador Brian Carlson advises the InterMedia research organization on military and foreign affairs issues and serves the State Department as a senior inspector. For the last three years he was the State Department liaison to the Department of Defense on strategic communication.

 

...click authors name for more info

Author: Brian Carlson

The Public Diplomacy Council is a nonprofit organization committed to the academic study, professional practice, and responsible advocacy of public diplomacy. Founded in 1988, the Council serves the community of public diplomacy professionals, professors and students interested in public diplomacy.

 

 

Upcoming

 

First Monday Lunches

May 5: Martha Bayles, Author of "Through a Screen Darkly: Popular Culture, Public Diplomacy, and America's Image Abroad"

Santa Fe World Affairs Forum Symposium

April 28-29: Talking with the Enemy, Cultivating Friends - Diplomacy Revisited

St. John's College, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Register by April 21 HERE

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