A curated selection of public diplomacy-relevant news from a global cross-section of English-language media outlets, including independent, corporate-owned, and state-sponsored sources. The stories featured don't necessarily represent CPD's views nor have they been verified by CPD.

Top U.S. Diplomat Blasts Trump Administration for ‘Decapitation’ of State Department Leadership

Two former ambassadors have rebuked the White House in an increasingly vocal backlash against its efforts to sideline the State Department. “Our leadership ranks are being depleted at a dizzying speed,” Barbara Stephenson, a former U.S. ambassador to Panama and current president of the American Foreign Service Association, the union for foreign service officers, wrote in a letter for the December 2017 issue of the Foreign Service Journal.

Tags: government pd, state department, u.s. department of state, Donald Trump, united states

Can This DC TV Show Win the Messaging War Against Russia?

 It’s 1 pm, and Current Time America is on the air. The program is one of two stateside productions of Current Time, a 24-7 Russian-language TV channel headquartered in Prague. But this isn’t some Euro import or a start-up aimed at Russian expats—it’s run by the U.S. government. Launched in February, the project is a collaboration between two venerable broadcasters, Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. After Russia annexed Crimea, says Daisy Sindelar, the network’s director, “we realized that we were losing a messaging war.”

Tags: international broadcasting, current time, voice of america, radio free europe/radio liberty, messaging, strategic messaging, information warfare

It’s Time for the State Department to Stop Throwing Money at Facebook

One of the most eye-opening moments of my time as the deputy assistant secretary for digital strategy at the U.S. State Department occurred on a trip to the country of Georgia, aimed at helping the government build its digital capacity to better serve its population. Our message was the same advice we’d given to countless governments: Focus on Facebook. It was the dominant player. Elites tended to use Twitter. Google ads were worth it if you had the money. But for governments wanting to reach real people on a global scale, Facebook was the scalable, smart solution. 

Tags: Digital Diplomacy & New Technology, social media diplomacy, social media, facebook, state department, u.s. department of state, united states, georgia

DU Creates Professor of Diplomacy Post, Aims for a Bigger Role in World Events

The University of Denver says it wants to play a bigger role in world events and is kickstarting those efforts by giving former ambassador to Iraq Christopher R. Hill a new job. Hill, dean of DU’s Josef Korbel School of International Studies for the past seven years, on Tuesday was named chief adviser to the chancellor for global engagement and professor of the practice of diplomacy, a first-of-its-kind role for a major American university, school officials said.

Tags: university of denver, higher education, universities, diplomacy, international studies, denver, colorado, united states

Starbucks Is Doing Something Different for National Coffee Day

Rather than give out free coffees or offer BOGO ("Buy One, Get One Free") deals, Starbucks is taking a different approach to National Coffee Day. The mega-chain will be doing a massive makeover of its stores across the nation this weekend, replacing menu boards with information about the farmers the company sources its coffee from. The aim is to inform customers about the challenges these farmers face, including coffee leaf rust and climate change, and the company’s commitment to ethical and sustainably sourced coffee.

Tags: Coffee Diplomacy, gastrodiplomacy, coffee farmers, starbucks, fair trade, trade and business diplomacy, agribusiness, climate diplomacy

Professor Helps U.S. State Department with Sports Diplomacy

Can sports increase dialogue and cultural understanding between people around the world? The U.S. State Department believes so — and has tapped Salisbury University’s Dr. Dean Ravizza to assist. Recently, for a 10-day Israeli/Palestinian basketball program, the Princess Anne resident designed a series of lectures and activities emphasizing concepts such as negotiation, teamwork and group dynamics.

Tags: sports diplomacy, united states, u.s. department of state, U.S. State Department, conflict resolution, youth diplomacy, israel, israel-palestine conflict, palestine

Young Foreign Workers Pervade Vancouver Metro's Hospitality Sector

There has been a sharp rise in the number of young foreign nationals obtaining working-holiday jobs in the Canadian hospitality industry under the federal government’s “international experience” visa program. The number of young workers coming to Canada on temporary visas from France, Chile, South Korea, Spain, Italy, Taiwan and several other countries has jumped more than 10-fold since the early 2000s.

Tags: exchange diplomacy, business exchange program, cultural work visas, cultural exchange, hospitality, canada, vancouver

Panda Diplomacy: Two Giant Pandas from China Land in Indonesia

Two giant pandas from China arrived in Indonesia on Thursday in an act of "panda diplomacy" aimed at celebrating 60 years of bilateral ties. Cai Tao and Hu Chun, both aged seven, arrived from Sichuan province and will be housed at a safari zoo in Bogor, a city near the capital Jakarta. The pandas were lent by Beijing to mark the diplomatic anniversary despite recent tensions between the nations, with a number of clashes between Chinese and Indonesian vessels in the South China Sea.

Tags: soft power, china, indonesia, panda diplomacy, panda bears, pandas, beijing, anniversary

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