HFMA03135U FM, Public Diplomacy in the Era of Digital Media

Årgang 2013/2014
Engelsk titel

Public Diplomacy in the Era of Digital Media

Master in Film and Media Studies

Over the course of the past ten years public diplomacy has become an important part of Denmark’s foreign policy strategy.

Public diplomacy is a strategic communicative practice aimed at informing or influencing publics in other countries and broadening dialogue with their citizens and civil society. In this class we study the deployment of such practices and consider how public diplomacy has been transformed in the era of digital media, producing unique benefits and hurdles. We also compare public diplomacy to related concepts such as political communication and propaganda.

We study public diplomacy through the lenses of theory as well as selected case studies of the influence of the media from the past decade.

The growing importance of public diplomacy is explained by a series of national and international events as well as more general socio-cultural developments. For example we will look at how the global proliferation of networked and digital technologies has made non-state actors powerful agents in international relations and made states more susceptible to the effects of news, slander, and so-called ‘truthiness’ in the global arena.

We will consider in particular the Danish Cartoon Controversy (2005-2006) as well as Denmark’s involvement in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq (2001-2013) to study how public diplomacy became a vehicle for restoring the country’s international image following these events, which significantly changed the international perception of Denmark and were the main catalysts in the development of the current public diplomacy strategy of the Danish administration.

Finally we will look at the ways in which public diplomacy in the era of digital media also holds a great potential in facilitating new forms of intercultural dialogue and participation between people separated by geographic, social, and cultural divides.

2013: Elective 1, HFMK03131E
2013: Elective 3, HFMK03151E

2008: Media, aesthetics and genres, HMEK03131E
2008: Audience and user studies, HMEK03121E 
2008: Elective 1, HMEK03201E
2008: Elective 1, HMEK03191E 
2008: Elective 2, HMEK03211E
2008: Film aesthetics and reception, HFVA04141E
2008: Elective 1, HFVA04171E
2008: Elective 1, HFVA04181E

Benkler, Y. (2006) The Wealth of Networks. How Social Production Transforms Markets and Freedom. New Haven: Yale University Press.

Castells, M. (2008) The New Public Sphere: Global Civil Society, Communication Networks, and Global Governance. In: Cowan, G. and Cull, N. eds. (2008) Public Diplomacy in a Changing World.The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science (616).

Cowan, G. and Cull, N. (2008) Public Diplomacy in a Changing World. The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science (616)

Habermas, J. (2006) Political Communication in Media Society: Does Democracy Still Enjoy an Epistemic Dimension? The Impact of Normative Theory on Empirical Research. Communication Theory, 16 (4).

Huntington, S. (1993) The Clash of Civilizations? Foreign Policy, 73 (Summer 3).

Nye, J (1990) Soft Power. Foreign Policy (Fall 90).

Nye, J. (2008) Public Diplomacy and Soft Power. In: Cowan, G. and Cull, N. eds. (2008) Public Diplomacy in a Changing World.The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science (616).

Pew Institute (2006) The Great Divide: How Westerners and Muslims View Each Other. Introduction and Summary. Available at: http:/​/​www.pewglobal.org/​2006/​06/​22/​the-great-divide-how-westerners-and-muslims-view-each-other/​

Riordan, S. (2004) Dialogue-based Public Diplomacy: A New Foreign Policy Paradigm. Discussion Papers in Diplomacy, 95. Available at: http:/​/​www.clingendael.nl/​publications/​2004/​20041100_cli_paper_dip_issue95.pdf

Rumsfeld, D. (2006) New Realities in the Media Age. Council on Foreign Relations, Feb. 17, 2006. Available at: http:/​/​www.cfr.org/​iraq/​new-realities-media-age-conversation-donald-rumsfeld-rush-transcript-federal-news-service-inc/​p9900.

A detailed list of assigned readings for the class will be made available at a later point.


MA level, BA elective
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