Welcome to the second issue of PD. As many of you know, we launched the inaugural issue earlier this year. Since then the excitement around the creation of a new, vital publication in the field has continued. We’ve hosted events in Los Angeles and in Washington D.C. that were attended by members of the diplomatic, governmental, cultural and non-profit communities who welcomed these opportunities to meet each other, talk about public diplomacy, and forge relationships that promise of future collaboration. The energy which surrounded the events, and the support we have received have exceeded our greatest hopes, reiterating how important it is to have a publication that chronicles the growth of public diplomacy as a field of study, practice and research.
Moreover, the fact that PD is available both in print and online has garnered a truly global audience who have requested copies, posted comments online, and emailed us about their diverse public diplomacy endeavors around the world.
The response has had two tangible outcomes. It has inspired us to launch a new section called “Forum”, a space where professionals write specifically about the innovative PD initiatives of their governments, organizations, or institutions. In this issue, Senator Richard Lugar and the State Department’s Jeremy Curtin wrote to us in response to our first issue, which asked what President Obama could do to help guide a new public diplomacy strategy for the United States. Their Forum pieces detail legislation and web 2.0 strategies aimed at increasing America’s engagement with global publics.
The second outcome has been our renewed commitment to having the content of the magazine reflect diverse views and public diplomacy goals that exist among of our global readership. This issue, which is themed “Middle Powers: Who They Are; What They Want” concerns the unique public diplomacy challenges and opportunities of the so-called middle power countries.
Some of the countries profiled in this issue are already frequently referred to as middle powers. Others will be surprising, and will challenge the traditional notions of what a middle power should be. The intent is not to provide a definitive list of the world’s middle powers (and indeed, you might disagree with our choices; for example, we have not singled out the oft-scrutinized BRIC countries for further examination in this issue). Instead, we explore the way public diplomacy is practiced by middle powers due to their size and/or their unique position in the world. Our choices also give exposure to countries that are sometimes hard to find in public diplomacy case studies, even though their approaches are worthy of examination.
From our lead section, Navigating the Middle, through our “Perspectives” and “PD in Practice” features, the behaviors and characteristics of middle power nations expose recurring themes that affect their public diplomacy, including the challenge of acquiring positive international attention, managing scarce resources, and the imperative of being streamlined and strategic in their messaging. For example, the South Africa and Australia contributions both illustrate the importance of international sporting events in bringing the spotlight to their respective corners of the world. In our Case Study section we look at a trio of countries whose national brands must coexist with their very strong corporate brands.
This issue marks our last endeavor as students in the Master of Public Diplomacy program at USC. As we graduate and enter the field as practitioners, we leave the publication in the capable hands of the class of 2010. We greatly appreciate the support of the MPD program, the Dean’s office at the Annenberg School for Communication, USC College’s School of International Relations, our advisory boards and our contributors. Particular thanks to the USC Center on Public Diplomacy staff for their continued encouragement and assistance.
It has been our privilege to work on the inaugural issues of PD magazine and engage in dialogue with our contributors and readers. Please keep the correspondence and suggestions coming at [email protected]
Finally, thank you for your support. It has truly been an exciting year!
Anoush Rima Tatevossian Desa Philadelphia Lorena M. Sanchez
Editor-in-Chief Managing Editor Senior Editor