Secretary of State Clinton, accompanied by U.S. Ambassador to Timor-Leste Judith R. Fergin, is greeted by traditional dancers at the Cooperativa Café Timor in Dili, Timor-Leste, September 6, 2012. Established in 1994 with the support of USAID, the self-supporting cooperative has now expanded to vanilla, clove, cacao, and cassava production for export. UNMIT photo by Bernardino Soares. Department of State
The Department recognizes the central role of public diplomacy as a tool and an essential element of 21st century statecraft, and has committed to renewing America's engagement with the people of the world by enhancing mutual respect and understanding, and creating partnerships aimed at solving common problems. To address the challenges of today, the Department has developed the first detailed global strategy for public diplomacy in more than a decade, ensuring its alignment with foreign policy objectives. Public diplomacy programs explain American society and culture and policy making to a broader international public. By improving their understanding of American society and values, the United States can establish a positive narrative and framework for policy discussions.
Summary of Performance and Resources
The Department and USAID allocated $0.741 billion toward this Strategic Goal in FY 2012, which is one percent of the total State-USAID budget for all strategic goals. The performance of the illustrative indicator is provided in the following section.
Key Selected Achievements
- The Department's Fund for Innovation in Public Diplomacy enables embassies to quickly capitalize on public diplomacy opportunities that advance Department policy priorities. In 2012, the Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy conducted a special Innovation Fund competition to advance Economic Statecraft; 33 projects were funded, for a total of $1.5 million, on topics including entrepreneurship, skills training for women and youth, travel, and tourism.
- International Media Engagement: The Department continued to expand its capacity to reach international audiences by engaging foreign broadcast, print and digital media through Regional Media Hubs, foreign language spokespeople and innovative uses of technology. The Department's six Regional Media Hubs are positioned strategically around the globe in major media markets to reach the most influential global and regional outlets. As virtual extensions of the Department of State's Spokesperson's podium, the Hubs respond to the rapidly moving international media environment to amplify the U.S. Government's highest priority policy messages. Hub video teams traveled to support major policy events, capturing footage of U.S. officials in action for distribution to broadcast and digital media via satellite and the State Department's newly launched online video distribution platform-StateOnDemand. Spokespeople amplified the President and Secretary's messages in Arabic, Farsi, Spanish, Urdu, Dari, and other languages to ensure accurate coverage of U.S. policy in foreign media. In addition, media all over the world accessed senior policymakers in Washington via LiveAtState virtual press conferences, which use state-of-the-art technology to link foreign journalists and bloggers with U.S officials for meaningful discussions.
- Crisis Communications Surge Capacity: To ensure that the Department can disseminate accurate and timely information to both domestic and foreign audiences during a crisis, the Department's Bureau of Public Affairs established the Public Affairs Fly Away Communications Team (PA FACT). These rapid response teams deploy on a short-term basis to provide expertise and equipment for posts in time of crisis. PA FACT members also train and deploy with larger inter-agency teams to provide strategic messaging support for complicated operations during international crises.
- Social Media: The Department continued to expand its social media outreach by routinely scheduling global online engagements in up to nine languages on a variety of social media platforms, from Facebook to Twitter to Google+. The Spokesperson responded to questions received from Twitter at the podium for the first time, and the Department conducted its first-ever Google+ Hangout in Farsi for Persian-language journalists. The State Department's flagship social media sites saw exponential growth across platforms, and online audiences interacted with content tailored to their interests with the launch of "My State Department" on state.gov.