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National Flame Work for Strategic Communication.

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              The White House and National Security Council. Defense Department 1055 Report authorized by The National Defense Authorization Act. Washington, DC.
 http://uscpublicdiplomacy.org/index.php/resources/government_reports

http://mountainrunner.us/files/nsc/Sec1055Report.FINAL.pdf

              This report was done as a  requirement of the 2009 Duncan Hunter Act. The Act  demands for the president to submit a report to the  appropriate committees of Congress, briefing them on a comprehensive interagency strategy for public diplomacy and strategic communication.

             The reports opens with an executive summary outlining the purpose of effective strategic communication as being of much essential to sustaining global legitimacy and supporting United States policy aims. The reports goes ahead to draw clarity on the meaning of strategic communication by definition as “the synchronization of our words and deeds as well as deliberate efforts to communicate and engage with the intended audiences” . This comes at the back drop of the American willingness to understand the attitudes, opinions, grievances of people they communicate to around the world in their quest to advocate promoting democracy as well as changing the world opinion .After 9/11 ,the USA recognise that  it’s a big tusk and more neccesary than before to consider in serious terms  how their actions and policies will be interpreted by public audiences .Because of this page two of the report high lights how the USA engages  Deliberate Communication and engagement as a tool in  a wide range of programmes and activities deliberately focused on  understanding, engaging, informing, influencing and communicating with people through public affairs, public diplomacy, information operations and other efforts.

              The report also explains the interagency working groups, processes and positions  that have been created to improve their ability to better synchronize words and deeds .An initiative has been done to enable a balance between military and civilian  efforts.

            The report point out in clear terms that its purpose is not an attempt to create new terms and concepts, organisations or capabilities. but clarifying different aspects of strategic communication. While analysing the Strategy for Synchronization, it established that where as in the past ,the burden for synchronizing words and deeds has often been placed on the shoulders of the communications community, The report noted that there are actions well beyond those managed by the communication community that have  communicative value and impact. This finding is the land mark of this report bearing in mind that the avenues of communication have changed as well as the audience and channels.

              Secondly on page three the report  stressed that the strategy for deliberate communication and engagement should be “ strategic long term and not just  reactive and tactical”.much focus should be put on articulating  what the USA is for ,not just what its against .It stresses that Mutual respect and mutual interest must define the USA efforts to communicate and engage with the Muslim community around the world. As this effort is vital in discrediting violent extremism and ideology in a world after 9/11.

             The report notes that Deliberate communication is bar where the USA actions are judged by the public as well as identifying how the USA actions are being interpreted and perceived.On page four the report stresses that for this purpose the USA should not focus on a “one way communication”and it highlights this as the basis of why it has emphasised the importance of “engagement” to mean connecting with, listening to, and building long-term relationships with key stakeholders.

          The report notes that the initiative acknowledges the need for  planning, development ,and execution of engagement programs and activities to be better coordinated, integrated, and driven by research ,information and intelligence and the report notes that appropriate steps are being taken towards this effort.

          The first step this is being done  through interagency planning and coordination. Which has enabled a variety of perspectives, models and approaches used in  strategic planning .it goes on as well to address National level interagency coordination and suggest an interagency policy committees should be set up to over see the development and implementation of national security policies by multiple agencies of the US government. This strategy will breach the gap between multiple agencies in particular among the intelligence community in their fight against terror as well as in other supporting policy agencies to coordinate a good communication strategy.

            The report highlight as well  the impotence  of information, intelligence ,research and analysis as key enablers for policy development and strategic planning. The report emphasised that the priorities for strategic communication and engagement are treated the same as national security priorities ,since both focus on foreign audiences in recognizing USA’s area of mutual interest, its role in global affairs and as a respectful partner in its efforts to meet complex global challenges. This is real a every effective tool and USA has pursued this  through reaching out to the foreign audiences like in the Obama speech in Cairo two years ago.

          The report on page six explains that for the above innitiatives and objectives to be possible there is need to address resources,  because accountability, assessment, and reporting are critical aspects of the initiative  newly established planning process to ensure all major deliberate communication and engagement efforts are coordinated and effective. it also goes into deep details analysing the qualitative and quantitative aspects  of all the agencies involved to enable them to effectively execute these programs and activities. It highlight the role of national security staff, the role of the department of state and the role of department of defence as key agencies among others. The report goes ahead as well to mention different departments for example the global strategy engagement centre (GSEC), The public diplomacy office director (PDOD) within these agencies playing various roles and responsibilities as well as specifying the role and responsibility of each head of department. it goes in more detail to specify which representative of the department will attend or represent the department at meetings.  These details make this report as a good  guide book for effective communication)

             The report noted that presently a number of offices across the USA are engaged in providing information and analysis on a regular basis to civilian and military decision makers on global public opinion, It acknowledges the role of culture, values, and religion in shaping human behaviour;  media trends and influence on audiences ;and the impact of information technologies ,however it concludes with  a sceptical opinion that  the report is limited in as far as providing the  correct mechanism for addressing the USA government’s abilities to form  public-private partnership; sighting  among other reasons the still pending reviews namely the presidential study directive on development and the department of state quadrennial diplomacy and development review.

          All in all the report has highlighted in detail the national framework for strategic planning operations in its effort to maximise effective communication, and the steps and initiatives that has been taken by different agencies engaged in this innitiative.It is a well researched document written in clear and simple english and where possible it has gone a step further to define terminologies used and has given them difinitions.It leaves little room for critic although in its conclusion the report has highlighted an emphasis to be put on the pending reviews but as a study paper it has provided  a good blue print that can be used as a white paper on forming the new strategy and policy for strategic communication.

The impact of Culture on Cold war

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The impact of  Public and culture diplomacy on the cold war has been documented. Many Scholars and  analysts have given their opinion and diplomats have shared their  experiences of the impact culture had on the cold war.although other geo-political and economic factors played a significant role in ending the cold war, it is worth mentioning a few culture programmes that were fundamental during the West-East Cold war conflict.

The first noted among these cultural programmes was the American world wide library programme and  Wilson in The story of the US Information Agency argues that the cultural activities preluded even formal diplomatic activities and also stresses that libraries were the first official USA presence in Asian and African countries. For example, the library in Nepal opened its doors six years before a U.S. embassy was established in Kathmandu. (Wilson P,2004 p 179).

Onother legend Librarian Zelma Graham who opened the first United States Information Service (USIS) library in down town Rangoon in Burma commented that “its brightly painted, light-filled rooms became much a part of the city life as its temples and canals” (Wilson ,2004.p179)

However the most profound impact was from the statement made by the founder of the  Fulbright programme, senator Fulbright when he commented that the  ideal principle underlying the exchange programme is  “The Ethos, in sum, is the belief that international relations can be improved and the danger of war significantly reduced, by producing generation of leaders ,who through the experience of educational exchange ,will have acquired some feeling and understanding of other peoples’ culture, why they operate as they do, why they think as they do, why they react as they do, and of the differences among these cultures”.(Nancy,2010: 88). It is claimed that  fuelled later with new ease of access provided by the jet plane, the second half of the twenties century witnessed the world wide exchange of scholars, students and artists across boarders than any other time in human history.and it is from these cultural and educational progrmmes that the western culture found its place in societies around the world and took root. This Western consumer culture epitomised in  the world of rock and jeans as McCauley  commented while acessing the impact of Western culture on Soviets citizens in the 1990’s  noted that, American Capitalism optimised in Western materialism became an “irresistible magnet, especially among the youth ,belief had began to gain ground that the west was a paradise”. (McCauley, 2004: 22)

He further noted that this culture started a revolution of rising expectations that swept aside Marxist-Leninist ideology. “Most of the younger generation no longer conceived of the United States as the mortal enemy, waiting to launch a nuclear strike against them”. Furthermore:  “Arguably Coca Cola, jeans, Walkman, CDs and the paraphernalia of the western consumer culture did more to undermine the appeal of socialism and normalise relations than any number of books and  propaganda broadcasts”. (McCauley, 2004: 22)

These factor on their own had a very much impact that influenced the generation in the soviet and changed there perspective and perception on the  propaganda  they were being  fed  on by the communist soviet in its effort to fight the west and all it stood for.

As the 20thcentury came to an end the Western consumer culture and way of life that was promoted through this exchange of ideas and cultures had started ripping fruits  ,this was witnessed in pronounced and more firm culture ideas that cut across state national boundaries and even cut through the Iron curtain by trumping over socialism.

From the above cultural experiences ,it can be concluded as Nancy argued that “It is possible, not very probable, but possible that people can find in themselves, through intercultural education, the ways and means of living together in peace”. (Nancy Snow,2010. p 88 ). Bearing this in mind gives an assumption that since cultural programmes had united diffirent cultures into more understanding of each other’s way of life and opinions,it is worth concluding that culture among other programmes played a vital role to end the cold war.

                                                                            Bibiography

 

1-      Baroness Williams,2003.The U.S.-The role of World Leader: “A Decent Respect to the opinions of Mankind” (The British Library board)

 

2-      Martin McCauley,2004(2nd edition) Russia, America and the Cold war (Pearson Longman)

 

 

3-      Nancy Snow,2010(3rd edition) Selling America’s Culture to the world Sseven Stories Press)

 

4-      Richard T.Arndt,(2005) American Cultural Diplomacy in the Twentieth Century (Potoman Books,inc)

 

 

5-      Wilson P. Dizard Jr,(2004) Inventing Public Diplomacy:The Story of the U.S Information Agency(Lynne Rienner Publisher)

Branding:A public Diplomacy tool.

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Prime Minister brands Uganda Visible  http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/109-blog-The-Very-Visible-Prime-Minister-of-Uganda.html

The second half of the 20th century has witnessed countries evolve as a result of   the advancement in technology. However this is not to suggest that technology determines the environment, but it does change the nature of social relationships.At the close of the twentieth century International Television had become the primary means of conveying  a national presence, some countries have had to come up with schemes  to brand them selves,

 Uganda in 2004 at a cost of $2.2 billion shillings hired CNN for six months to promote the country as a top tourist destination in a scheme “Uganda a gift of nature”  the objective of the project was to Counter the negative international media coverage that had been experienced lately,Promote Uganda as a 21st century tourist destination, and Give exposure to investment opportunities in the country in a more robust manner and to a wider audience http://www.latestcinema.com/tourism/uganda-in-tourism-promotion-deal-with-CNN.html 

The CNN campaign worked as a pilot scheme and the government realised that Branding was the way to go ,and over the past 12 years the country has undertaken various ventures to brand its image and maintain that image.A year later in 2005 the Ugandan government engaged international lobbyist former British Minister for overseas Development Ms Linda Charker and former US secretary for African affairs during Bill Clinton government toms Rosa Whitakerhttp://allafrica.com/stories/200802041263.html ,the following year (2006) government hired again a British public relations firm Hill&Knowtton  at shs 1.6 billion to improve the countries image in the international  media.http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/4563909.stm

 This year an Irish PR Company Glenevin Operational Risk and security Consultancy was hired through the office of prime minister at Shs 2.3 billion to clean up the government image dented by police’s brutal crack down on peaceful demonstrations.http://mobile.monitor.co.ug/News/-/691252/1329522/-/format/xhtml/-/62oxgh/-/index.html

This trend of branding strikes a resemblance with other branding ventures taken by Kuwait through its two war machine lobby groups; the coalition for America at risk andFreedom task force which hired PR law and lobby firms in its campaign to mobolise United States opinion and force against Hussein http://www.prwatch.org/books/tsigfy10.html Kuwait managed to hire Rendon Group,Neill&Co and Hill&Knowtton,these companies worked hard  to booster its image after 1990-1991 Gulf war.  Saudi Arabia has as well engaged  Qorvis to improve its image   and the same company was hired by Bahrain after the 2011 uprising that led to cancellation of 2011 formular one worldevents.presently it is still engaged in a PR effort to improve the image of the Bahrain royal family .http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/198385-meet-bahrains-lobbyists

With the incresing usage of internet governments have made drastic steps to shift from engaging the public through the television and print media now diplomats and government officials are using the ,Internet,Youtube ,Twiter and other first communicatioins channels to brand them selves. After the reliese of Kony Video which caused an uprole in the international media ,the Ugandan Prime Minister has appeared twice on You-tube  in a spell of two months to brand Uganda in a different way from the one depicted in the Josepy Kony’s film” Invisible children”.  http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/109-blog-The-Very-Visible-Prime-Minister-of-Uganda.html

 Usually the National presence in the international news media was done through the convergence of print, television and radio means but now with a billion people with access to the internet has added on the impact of promoting the country’s brand.

                                                                                       Bibliography

http://in2eastafrica.net/uganda-govt-pays-irish-pr-firm-shs2b-to-clean-image-dented-by-walk-to-work/

http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/200509/26/eng20050926_210953.html

http://www.independent.co.ug/column/comment/5722?task=view

 http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/109-blog-The-Very-Visible-Prime-Minister-of-Uganda.html

http://www.latestcinema.com/tourism/uganda-in-tourism-promotion-deal-with-CNN.html

The Economic Aspect of Public Diplomacy

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The Economic Aspect of Public Diplomacy.

Public Diplomacy is multifaceted, there are three faces of Public Diplomacy.The social  cultural, political or the economic aspect. International business and tourism promotion represent the economic face of public diplomacy. This is carried out through country teams 2011  Prime Minister Cameroon trip to  Asia accompanied by representative of business community form the basis of this new form of economic diplomacy. This team was with a mission to raise Britain international business profile as well as attracting more foreign visitors and investers.

This  process  accomodates all the countries aspects of diplomacy in all dimensions education, culture and immigration, thruogh this process it  foams a self perpetuating system that leads to attain the intended objective of the mission.this happend in a situation where foreign students may return as tourists or investors, or tourists may become future immigrants.

E,Potter in “Branding Canada” argue that “Public diplomacy should be seen as a process acrossseveralmtime frames;it should be understood with respect to the instruments empoloyed;and there should be some appreciation of the role played by a country’s own citizen with respect to the promotion of the national identity abroad. Potter 2009:43

However it should be noted that ,most importantly, promoting a countries economic advantage to international audiences raises its diplomatic advantage as a country whose views need to be heard on the world stage and this influence is  the ultimate goal of any country involved in inter governmental organisations  like G8,African Union, European Union and the United Nations.

However as Raston Saul argues his case for and against  country  branding for economic gain,he states that, a country’s image is more than formal representation of culture. he throws a caution that the challenge for  countries that wish to have an impact on the world today is to establish a solid image of them selves abroad.  he goes further to conclude his argument that  “That image is the platform on which a foreign policy, trade policy, cultural policy can be built at the international level” Potter,2009:276

Most countries have realised that it is becoming increasingly impossible to pursue diplomacy aimed at the political diamention,embassies are adjusting there missions to include diplomats responsible for trade promotion.Presently the economic aspects regarding trade and investment oppotunites are piriolities on the agenda of many foreign missions.

Potter concludes arguing that  any country persuing economic diplomacy should adjust its policy in a way that the economic components of the national brand –the degree of attractiveness for business and tourism-should be a focus of interest for all levels of governments. Since all these elements of national brand are inextricably intertwined and cannot be seen in separate silos.Potter,2009:276

                                                                                       Bibliography

1-      Wilson P. Dizard Jr,(2004) Inventing Public Diplomacy:The Story of the U.S Information Agency(Lynne Rienner Publisher)

 2-Evan H.Potter,(2009) Branding Canada:projecting canadas power through Public Diplomacy (McGill-Queen’s University Press)

The Case for Smart Power

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US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recognise “smart power” as essential to American Foreign Policy.   

 

With globalisation in the 21st century, the very nature of power, defined as “the capacity to do things and in social situations to affect others to get the outcomes we want” (Nye, 2011, 6), has arguably been transformed. In this way, states such as the United States and China have recognised that they no longer can rely solely on hard power of coercion, based upon military and economic resources, when seeking to implement their respective foreign policies (www.boston.com and http://www.ekopolitik.org.) 

As a response to these changes in power relations, Joseph Nye coined the term “Smart Power” in 2004 (Nye, 2011, xiv.) As a combination of hard power of coercion and soft power of attraction, based upon a state’s attributes such as culture, values and level of legitimacy, smart power refers to the strategic interaction of public and cultural diplomacy, traditional diplomacy, development and defence (Nye, 2011, 209, http://www.boston.com and http://www.ekopolitik.org.)      

Joseph Nye argues that states may find themselves both in situations where the mere use of hard power is counterproductive as well as in situations where soft power, hereunder public and cultural diplomacy, proves inadequate, as has arguably been the case with seeking to halt North Korea’s nuclear weapons program (www.boston.com.) In this way, Joseph Nye argues that states, regardless of their size, must seek to combine the two (www.boston.com.)

With this, China has invested billions of dollars on the development and implementation of soft power policies since 2007, hereby transcending hard power and embracing smart power (www.boston.com.)

In the United States, the concept of smart power has gained momentum under the Obama administration. Where Former President George Bush relied heavily on hard power policies, arguably especially with the Iraq War, President Barack Obama has recognised the importance of attraction in international politics (www.cbsnews.com, http://www.ekopolitik.org and http://sundaytimes.lk.) In this way, through outreach, a number of symbolic speeches across the world and the implementation of substantial soft power policies, public opinion of the United States abroad were in many places restored to their pre-President Bush numbers just a year after President Obama took office (http://sundaytimes.lk.)          

The major proponent of the use of American smart power has been Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. With this, she put forth the concept as essential to American foreign policy as early as 2009, stating that the Bush administration’s hard power politics had not been efficient, while appearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In this way, Clinton proclaimed: “We must use what has been called ‘smart power,’ the full range of tools at our disposal — diplomatic, economic, military, political, legal, and cultural — picking the right tool, or combination of tools, for each situation”(www.cbsnews.com.)

Clinton Vows “Smart Power” Diplomacy, 2009:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JHYB6J_P7Mc

 

Bibliography: 

 

Nye Jr., J. S. (2011), The Future of Power, PublicAffairs, New York. 

 

Clinton: Use “Smart Power” in Diplomacy (2009), CBS News, accessed 21st April 2012.

http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-250_162-4718044.html

 

Public Diplomacy and Smart Power – An Interview with Joseph S. Nye Jr. (Date Unknown), Ekopolitik, accessed 21st April 2012.

http://www.ekopolitik.org/en/news.aspx?id=5487&pid=1850

 

Wielding “Smart Power” in World Affairs (2011), The Boston Globe, accessed 21st April 2012.

http://www.boston.com/ae/books/articles/2011/02/06/wielding_smart_power_in_world_affairs/

 

Testing Obama’s “Smart Power” Foreign Policy (2009), The Sunday Times, accessed 23rd April 2012.

http://sundaytimes.lk/091213/International/int_01.html

 

Rebranding Brazil: The Sustainable Country

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When we think about a specific country we associate it with certain images which are daily imposed to us. Switzerland is perfect for skying in its amazing resorts in the Alps. In Egypt they have pyramids and great weather. These are just two simple examples of how countries are stereotyped by images they try to sell outside.

Brazil is no exception. The image of the country is commonly linked with Rio’s carnival, samba and football. Nonetheless the country is trying to add sustainable development to this list. (1) For instance, two years ago in the Shangai Expo, the Brazilian Pavillon was made by recyclable wooden material to demonstrate how committed the country regarding sustainability, as the following video demonstrates:

Plus, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, or Rio+20, will be held in Rio de Janeiro in June this year and the first international Earth Summit was, also, in Rio in 1992. As an emerging economy starting to gain significant importance in world politics, it has invested more in his sustainable image. Adding sustainability to Brand Brazil it will highlight the country’s presence in world politics and benefit its promising energy industry[1]. Brazil receives 83 percent of its energy from hydroelectric power and it is a major producer of sugar and ethanol[2].

Branding Brazil as a sustainable country will only positively benefit the country since climate change is now one of the major transnational issues which is affecting people worldwide. In order to be a major player in the international scene, Brazil is realistically investing in the environment since no other great power has done real efforts regarding this issue. For this reason, Brazil would be the pioneer in the big table.


[2] Armijo, L. (2007) The BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) as analytical category:  mirage or insight?. Asian Perspective, Vol. 31, No.4, p.21

Celebrity Public Diplomacy: is it so bad?

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Celebrity diplomacy is whether loved or hated by the academic community. Andrew Cooper, author of “Celebrity Diplomacy” argues celebrity diplomats can be beneficial or negative for foreign policy issues, depending on the celebrity[1]. On one hand, there are Bono and celebrity activists conscientious of the work they have ahead. On the other hand, there are messy and problematic amateurs who cannot handle the pressure and complexity of the job, such as Gerri “Ginger Spice” Halliwell[2].

Interestingly, 30 years ago celebrities were confined to titles as UN ambassadors, as Audrey Hepburn. However, nowadays celebrities have more flexibility to address issues and, usually, they do not mind to be controversial. Also, it is important to highlight the access they possess to the public or to higher officials, which is unimaginable for a diplomat[3]. However, they are often criticised for shadowing the complexity of the issues with their fame, undermining the work of aid workers and use notorious issues to sell themselves as well-informed and politically active celebrities[4]. Also, celebrity diplomats are north-centric since the majority of celebrities with this status are from the North Hemisphere and, for this reason, they are not legitimate advocators for these causes[5].

These are all acceptable and legitimate arguments but, as Andrew Cooper argued above, it depends on the celebrity. Some celebrity diplomats have made successful achievements and these cannot be undermined. Plus, they have dedicated a great amount of their time for these causes, for instance Bono who has dedicated his efforts to raise funds to develop the African continent.

Another example of a celebrity diplomat is George Clooney. Clooney has been a celebrity activist focused particularly on the situation in Darfur, Sudan. He has an extensive curriculum behind him since he has testified before the Congress; met with President Obama; addressed the UN Security Council; is involved with several organisations focused on the area; created the Satellite Sentinel Project; and, more recently, he was arrested during a protest in the Sudanese embassy in Washington D.C.  Therefore, Clooney is not a simple celebrity screaming for help, he has actually made several accomplishments.

Despite of negative arguments regarding celebrity diplomacy, George Clooney brought to the spotlight the critical situation in South Sudan and Darfur. This way, he helped activists raise awareness to the region’s genocide. His efforts in Darfur cannot be undermined just because of his pretty face or his fame. Clooney is very cautious on his work, for this reason he used techniques from Bono and advice from experts in order to better perform his assignment[6]. Therefore, he is not an amateur celebrity diplomat using the cause to promote himself.