Center for Strategic Communication

Public Diplomacy via Social Media

New America Foundation

The phrase “U.S. diplomacy” may render up images of two diplomats meeting quietly behind closed doors, but in the 21st Century, one of those diplomats could bring thousands of Twitter followers along for the meeting and use them to gauge the popularity of any ideas that might come from the meeting.


Zero Dark Thirty – Viewed from Afar?

Michael Canning / The Public Diplomacy Council

It is harder to say what more sophisticated overseas viewers in developed countries might take away from “Zero Dark Thirty.”  In Great Britain, which follows our movie-going trends closely, it has already received critical recognition with its naming as one of the best films of the year from the British Film Academy (BAFTA), where it was also nominated for five major awards.


From Card Catalogues to 21st Century Community Centers: New Dynamics for the American Space

Tara Sonenshine / Department of State

Today, I want to talk to you about some amazing places around the world that we call American Spaces and to tell you where they are, what they do, and about the public diplomacy that happens in them – and why they are so important to our prosperity and security – and everyone’s futures in this room.


US Combating African Extremism with Public Diplomacy

Pamela Dockins / Voice of America News

The United States is working to counter violent extremism in Africa by providing an “alternative narrative” and “alternative scenarios,” according to Under Secretary of State Tara Sonenshine.


Twitter for Diplomats: A Guide to the Fastest Growing Digital Diplomacy Tool

Andreas Sandre / Diplo

Twitter is not only the fastest growing form of social media around, but also a veritable initiation to digital diplomacy for most ambassadors around the globe. Indeed, 140 characters have changed the way we see the world. It has changed how foreign policy is shaped to better respond to new international challenges. In ancient Rome, the phenomenon was called Vox Populi; today it goes under many different names: from ediplomacy to Twiplomacy.


Imperial Ad Men

Noah Berlatsky / Reason

The art of communicating with the people—public relations—is a notoriously messy business, involving a mixture of persuasion and selective editing, if not outright deception. The art of communicating with foreign publics—sometimes called public diplomacy—is even more fraught. The inherent contradiction in promoting freedom through propaganda is at the heart of Justin Hart’s new book, Empire of Ideas: The Origins of Public Diplomacy and the Transformation of U.S. Foreign Policy.


Our Reports

Fact Sheet: The U.S. State Department’s American Spaces Programs

Lívia Pontes Fialho

For American public diplomacy, engaging with foreign audiences face-to-face continues to be an invaluable asset for promoting mutual understanding and the values of American culture. The State Department’s American Spaces programs are traditional tools in that effort. In 2012, over 16 million people visited these spaces to learn more about the United States.


On Our Flashpoint Blog

NASA’s Public Diplomacy – Improving Relations on Earth by Exploring Space

Danielle Parillo

On Tuesday, March 5 ASP hosted the event “NASA’s Public Diplomacy – Improving Relations on Earth by Exploring Space.” Speakers included Kent G. Bress, the Director of Aeronautics and Cross Agency Support Division at NASA’s Office of International and Interagency Relations and  Dr. Vaughan Turekian, Chief International Officer at American Association for the Advancement of Science.


American Spaces – and the Argument for Public Diplomacy

Lívia Pontes Fialho

Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, Tara Sonenshine, gave a speech yesterday at Harvard University where she made the argument for public diplomacy. It becomes particularly compelling at a time of uncertainty, where budgets could be significantly constrained.