Interview with Ali Fisher on Big Data, Networks, Public Diplomacy and Country Image

Ali Fisher, Principal Data Scientist at VORTEX (University of Vienna) and CPD Research Fellow at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy (University of Southern California), in this interview discusses big data, new networks and the resulting opportunities - and challenges - for public diplomacy professionals.

Dr Fisher offers insights into how the upcoming US elections might influence the country's image, how countries can use strategic communication to project their desired image, and what the future of public diplomacy might look like.

Learn about:

  • How country branding differs from nation branding and public diplomacy;
  • What data-driven diplomacy is and how it is implemented;
  • A few key insights on using strategic communications in an attempt to combat terrorism;
  • Some suggestions for a country aiming to improve international strategic communications and its public diplomacy.

Ali, how does country branding differ from nation branding and public diplomacy?

At a strategic level, whatever name you give to your specific approach, you are ultimately in the influence business. No matter the label you choose, the fundamental aspect when considering to develop a strategy is how to utilize the full range of "options for influence", ranging from listening and facilitation to broadcast and direct messaging.

The label you use might narrow the range of available options to influence – it is important to be clear which approaches are implicitly (or explicitly) excluded by the chosen nomenclature.

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The Editorial Team

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