Jennifer Hubbert, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Lewis & Clark College
Cultural diplomacy is often conceived of as part of a country’s foreign relations, in that cultural dialogue can sometimes achieve what political dialogue cannot. It is an example of “soft power”― the possibility of communicating through culture and ideas to achieve national interests.
In an increasingly distributed global system, emerging-economy countries are now paying greater attention to culture and communication as part of the symbolic domain of their national power in global affairs. But their efforts remain little understood or even noted.
On February 28, the USC Center on Public Diplomacy hosted a major conference on cultural diplomacy in emerging markets at USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism.
This conference explored the cultural diplomacy efforts pursued by a number of countries with emerging economies. Panelists aimed to enrich our understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing institutions of cultural diplomacy in contemporary times. It was our goal to shed light on the bigger, broader issues of the role and potential of culture and public diplomacy in a multipolar world.
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