Connecting the dots between place branding, public diplomacy and economic development is one of the five topics for researchers to explore in 2017. In this research insight and case study on the Hague Peace and Justice project in the Netherlands, Ingrid de Beer and Arthur van Buitenen illustrate how beneficial close cooperation can be for developing and communicating a city’s unique identity.
- What led to this city branding case study;
- The key findings from the study;
- Challenges of using city branding to promote peace and justice;
- What makes The Hague’s approach to city branding innovative and unique;
- Main insights gained from the project.
Arthur and Ingrid, why the interest in The Hague, place branding and public diplomacy? What brought you to the topic?
Ingrid: What strikes me time and again is the enormous influence of the combined international law and justice knowledge in The Hague. It truly makes a difference in people’s lives all over the world and so few people know about it. My public diplomacy contribution is to help all these organisations in The Hague, from courts and tribunals, to NGOs and knowledge institutions and journalists to tell the good and powerful stories and make people aware that there is no peace without justice.
Arthur: What fascinates me in the Project Peace and Justice is the collaboration between such a diverse group of organizations: the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, other ministries and the City of The Hague, judges in the courts and tribunals, legal experts, journalists, NGO representatives, just to name some. My interest as a researcher is to find out what it is that makes these people work together—to analyse the dynamics.