Cultural Diplomacy a Pillar of Canadian Foreign Policy

Cirque du Soleil, Céline Dion, Drake, Daphne Odjib, Leonard Cohen, Michael Bublé and Margaret Atwood are just a few entries on a long list of globally known icons in Canadian culture. A new report by Canada's Standing Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade highlights the importance of the country's culture to its foreign policy objectives. 

This first study of the relationship between Canadian culture, arts and foreign policy since 1994 is the product of 27 hearings and testimonies by 60 witnesses. Following these insights, the report puts forward eight recommendations, including providing cultural diplomacy training to diplomats, creating a Canadian Studies program and coordinating with the country's provinces, territories and cities. 

"We heard from many witnesses about the power of arts and culture to send messages that mere words or traditional diplomatic endeavors cannot convey," said Senator Paul J. Massicotte, the Deputy Chair of the committee, in a press release. "In order for our country and our values to be better understood in the world, we need to further rely on our arts and culture as tools of international influence.” 

The full report, "Cultural Diplomacy at the Front Stage of Canada's Foreign Policy," can be found here via the Senate of Canada's website

See here for a CPD Blog post about an initiative by the North American Cultural Diplomacy Initiative (NACDI) convening North American partners to research cultural diplomacy and mitigating global conflict. 

Photo: Report cover by Canada's Standing Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade

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