ISA Working Group on Public Diplomacy

The International Studies Association was founded in 1959 to promote research and education international affairs. Its annual conference is a significant event for relevant academic communities. The next annual conference will be in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on March 16-19, 2011.

Of interest to readers of this blog, the 2011 conference had added a Working Group on Public Diplomacy:

The primary objective of the Working Group on Public Diplomacy is to establish a productive community of scholars from across the disciplines and divisions of ISA in order to advance the scholarship and teaching on public diplomacy. Public diplomacy represents an increasingly important convergence of multiple research trajectories within the ISA – including theoretical and practical research on influence efforts and ‘soft power,’ comparative work on foreign policy and practices of public engagement, as well as the instrumental role of international communication and global media leveraged by state and non-state institutions. The Working Group invites scholars actively engaged in research and teaching that recognizes the increased salience of public diplomacy as a foreign policy imperative around the world, and, how public diplomacy has transformed conceptual boundaries between diplomacy, communication, and international politics.

This working group will be led by (and the result of the hard work of) Craig Hayden, professor at American University and occasional blogger, and Kathy Fitzpatrick, professor at Quinnipiac University.

The working group includes one all-day pre-conference workshop on March 15 and two follow up meetings on March 17 and March 19. The schedule is below.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011
8:30am – 5:00pm
Pre-Conference Workshop

8:30 – 9:00 am Welcome & Introductions

9:00 – 10:00 am Keynote and Discussion
Matthew Armstrong

Matthew Armstrong is a writer for, the leading blog on U.S. public diplomacy and strategic communication and principal of the Mountainrunner Institute, a nonprofit public diplomacy research firm.

10:00 – 10:30 am Coffee Break    
10:30 – 12:00 pm Roundtable
Measurement, Effectiveness and the implications of Institutional Research on Public Diplomacy
12:00 – 1:30 pm Luncheon Keynote Speaker and Discussion
The implications of “engagement” for redefining the uses of technology in diplomacy
Jeremy Curtin and Mark Latonero

Jeremy Curtin is Former Coordinator for International Information Programs at the US State Department (the senior career public diplomacy officer for the US) and Mark Latonero is the Director of Research, Center on Communication Leadership and Policy, USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and blogger

1:30 – 3:00 pm Roundtable
Research, Theory and Interdisciplinarity in Public Diplomacy Studies
3:00 – 3:30 pm Coffee Break  
3:30 – 5:00 pm Roundtable                 
Public Diplomacy Pedagogy and Academic Program Development

Thursday, March 17, 2011
4:00-5:45 pm
Follow-up Meeting

Roundtable Presentation                                         
Public Diplomacy Subfield Presentation- International Broadcasting and New Media 

Amelia Arsenault (University of Pennsylvania), Shawn Powers (Georgia State University), Christina Archetti (University of Salford), Anthony Deos (University of Otago, NZ), and Ezzeddine Abdelmoula (Al-Jazeera).

Presenters will address how public diplomacy is implicated by developments in the geo-politics of news, the rise of social media technology, the use of so-called “PD 2.0” strategies within diplomatic institutions, and impact of international journalism.

Saturday, March 19, 2011
8:15 – 10:00 am
Wrap Up Session

Roundtable Discussion  
“The Way Ahead”

This roundtable discussion will review the panels attended during the conference, address the future of public diplomacy studies at ISA, and discuss the enduring impact of the Working Group through a sustainable online social media platform for collaboration and communication.