Summarizing Public Diplomacy Reports

image GAO, CRS, academics, and anyone else interested in Public Diplomacy and Strategic Communication must look at Steve Corman’s quick and dirty and most coherent summary ever of eighteen major public diplomacy reports from the most recent White Oak report back to a 2004 Brookings Report.

The raw numbers don’t tell the complete the story, but that half or more of the reports shared four recommendations is significant.

Somebody, perhaps one of Steve’s student’s, should take this a step further: look at the reports’ definition of public diplomacy and weigh the recommendations accordingly. Is Public Diplomacy an active component in the struggle of minds and wills using “fast” and “slow” communications or a passive informational tool primarily based on the “slow” communications of exchanges? 

Either way, Steve’s analysis is unique and the top values are certainly common and yet elusive? Why? Because we had, until last year, no real understanding of the value of people to people engagement after we came out of thirty years of state on state diplomacy followed by the End of History. Congress is eager to help change the system and the Defense Department is eager to help, but will the system, now “owned” by President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton, be changed?