rugby world cup
Bond University student Andie-Lee Cilliers takes a look at the role of rugby in South Africa's sports diplomacy history.
Papua New Guinea and the Pacific are to be at the centre of a new sport diplomacy policy being developed by Australia's opposition Liberal National coalition.
We aren’t doing too much in public diplomacy. We do have regular attendance at such expos, a military band that travels, a festival of arts held in the South Pacific, and shows like Pacific Night in Washington, DC and elsewhere . However, I don’t know if there’s a systematic plan to exploit this area on the world stage.
Estimating the longer-term benefits to the country is a much woolier calculation. The report projects that a legacy of sports-related tourism and the opportunity to do more hosting in the future could be worth NZ$1.44 billion. Indeed, New Zealand is set to co-host the 2015 Cricket World Cup with Australia, although it might well have secured that prize even if the rugby tournament were being played elsewhere.
Soft power diplomacy through the Rugby World Cup ... is not just symbolic. Money and people from New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade have been diverted to support the RWC and you won't have to go far to hear the term 'rugby diplomacy' used as a new form of New Zealand's soft power.
Funding for the REAL New Zealand Festival music programme has come from the NZ2011 Festival Lottery Grants Fund, the international cultural diplomacy programme, local government festival organisers and private sector promoters.
Our relationship with PNG should be a foreign policy priority and requires much closer attention. Surely there is an opportunity to capture their enthusiasm for our sporting stars in a positive way that enhances our bilateral relationship. Sport has the power to transcend social, cultural and language barriers.