In this episode, Jessica Gienow-Hecht and Nick Cull joined us to talk about the history of public diplomacy, define what it, and other similar terms, mean, and how governments use it.
Jessica Gienow-Hecht is a historian for international and North American history and Chair of the Department of History at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies (Freie Universität Berlin), Project Investigator of the research project “Gender, Borders, Memory,” in the Excellence Cluster “Contestations of the Liberal Script” (SCRIPTS), formerly a Heisenberg fellow as well as holder of the Alfred Grosser Chair at Sciences Po (Paris). Previously, she has taught courses at the universities of Virginia, Bielefeld, Halle-Wittenberg, Harvard, Frankfurt, Heidelberg, Cologne, the Hertie School of Governance (Berlin), Carleton University (Ottawa), and Doshisha University (Kyoto), and won a number of grants and awards, among those the John F. Kennedy fellowship as well as the Charles Warren Visiting fellowship, both at Harvard University along with a research grant from the German Marshall Fund. She is the author of Transmission Impossible: American Journalism as Cultural Diplomacy in Postwar Germany, 1945-1955 (1999, 2000), Sound Diplomacy: Music and Emotions in Transatlantic Relations, 1850-1920 (2009, 2012), series editor of Explorations in Culture and International History (Bergbahn Books, since 2003), and the editor of seven volumes, among those, with Sönke Kunkel and Sebastian Jobs (Eds), Visions of Humanity: Historical Cultural Practises since 1850 (forthcoming). Currently, she is working on a comparative analysis of illiberal and liberal states’ cultural diplomacy. Outside of academia, she has worked as a journalist (FAZ, Die Welt, Süddeutsche, Neue Rhein-/Ruhr Zeitung and others), in advertising (Eggert, Düsseldorf), and continues to appear in the media such as Deutschlandfunk with contributions related to transatlantic relations and North America. Together with her family, she lives in Berlin.
Nick Cull is professor of public diplomacy at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication. Originally from the UK he trained at Leeds University and Princeton and then taught at Birmingham and Leicester Universities. He has written widely on the history of propaganda and public diplomacy, writing or editing eight books including Public Diplomacy: Foundations for Global Engagement in the Digital Age (Polity, 2019) which has been translated into Italian, Spanish, Mandarin, Korean and was recently 'honored' with the publication of a pirated translation in Persian. He has a book in press on his concept of Reputational Security and is completing a history of the role of public diplomacy and propaganda in the struggle against Apartheid in South Africa. He has often assisted foreign ministries and trained diplomats to better understand issues of public diplomacy and is a past-president of the International Association for Media and History. He tweets as @NickCull and, with the British policy analyst Simon Anholt, has a podcast entitled People, Places, Power, which deals with issues of image and foreign policy.