New Media Roundtable on Britain’s Approach to Soft Power


As part of the New America Foundation/American Strategy Program‘s new media roundtable series, I am hosting a small roundtable discussion today with British Council CEO Martin Davidson and British Council Board Member and communications expert Raoul Shah.
The event will run from 3pm to 4pm EST and will stream live here at The Washington Note.
The topic will be roughly “Britain’s Approach to Smart Power.”
I am going to moderate the discussion from Berlin via video skype – with some on site assistance from my colleague Amjad Atallah.
The British Council is the world’s largest cultural relations agency, which is receiving increased attention from US policymakers seeking to revamp America’s “public diplomacy” operations. Davidson is fresh off a trip to Lahore where he just released a major report on Pakistani youth.
Davidson is also going to discuss why the British Council has been thrown out of both Russia and Iran in the past two years – and what the consequences of that are as the Council tries to re-establish itself in both places.
— Steve Clemons


6 comments on “New Media Roundtable on Britain’s Approach to Soft Power

  1. Martin says:

    So, I’ll take that as the latter then.
    Science education has a LONG way to go. Sigh.


  2. samuelburke says:

    yeap…im posting the truth up to be ridiculed.


  3. Martin says:

    SB, that’s a curious contribution from out of the left field of paranoid fantasy. Are you putting Rockwell’s post up for ridicule or are you trying to spread disinformation?


  4. samuelburke says:

    Climategate. the beloved story of the political class cant seem to
    get any footing in the msm since the email-fraud
    “So many new developments: which story do we pick? Maybe
    best to summarise, instead. After all, it’s not like you’re going to
    find much of this reported in the MSM.”
    “1. Australia’s Senate rejects Emissions Trading Scheme for a
    second time. Or: so turkeys don’t vote Christmas. Expect to see
    a lot more of this: politicians starting to become aware their
    party’s position on AGW is completely out of kilter with the
    public mood and economic reality. Kevin Rudd’s Emissions
    Trading Scheme – what Andrew Bolt calls “a $114 billion green
    tax on everything” – would have wreaked havoc on the coal-
    dependent Australian economy. That’s why several opposition
    Liberal frontbenchers resigned rather than vote with the
    Government on ETS; why Liberal leader Malcolm Turnbull lost his
    job; and why the Senate voted down the ETS.
    2. Danes caught fiddling their carbon credits. (Hat tip: Philip
    Stott) Carbon trading is the Emperor’s New Clothes of
    international finance. It was invented by none other than Ken
    Lay, whose Enron would currently be one of the prime
    beneficiaries in the global alternative energy market, if it hadn’t
    been shown to be (nearly) as fraudulent as the current AGW
    scam. It is a licence to fleece, cheat and rob. Still, jolly
    embarrassing for the Danes to get caught red handed, what with
    their hosting a conference shortly in which the world’s leaders
    will try, straight-faced, to persuade us that carbon emissions
    trading is the only viable way of defeating ManBearPig.
    3. Hats off to The Daily Express – the first British newspaper to
    make the AGW scam its front page story.
    The piece was inspired by another bravura performance by
    Professor Ian Plimer, the Aussie geologist who argues that
    climate change has been going on quite naturally, oblivious of
    human activity, for the last 4,567 million years.”


  5. Mr.Murder says:

    How about the Senate’s approach to soft power?
    “To find out if the so-called ban on “secret holds” was more than an empty promise, CREW conducted a review of the Senate Calendar of Business since HLOGA was passed. Guess what we found? Only two bills had “holds” placed on them in a way that complies with the 2007 law. Many more bills and nominations have apparently been held anonymously, including:
    Hilda Solis’s nomination hearing to become President Obama’s Secretary of Labor
    The passage of a veterans health care bill
    The confirmation of two of President Obama’s science-related nominees – who were apparently held by a senator protesting (of all things) the Obama administration’s Cuba policy.
    Today, CREW sent a letter to the Senate Select Committee on Ethics demanding an investigation into senators’ continued use of “secret holds” despite the ban.”


  6. GB says:

    You and your New America Foundation team are simply doing superb work. I half expected this forum to be a snoozer, but it was excellent and your long distance moderation gave it real energy. But the commenters and discussants were seriously good.
    Thanks, and just for the record, I am watching this from San Francisco, so you are really reaching people all over.


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