Ellen Huijgh and Caitlin Byrne

Summary

Public diplomacy’s scholarship and practice are evolving and seeking to adapt to the expanding interests, expectations, connectivity and mobility of the publics that have come to define the field in an organic fashion. The characteristic distinction between international and domestic publics as the key to defining the practice of public diplomacy is increasingly challenged by public audiences that are no longer constrained by such traditional delineations. The attention on the involvement of domestic publics in public diplomacy, or its domestic dimension, has to be understood within this context. This article aims to cast further light on public diplomacy’s domestic dimension, with Canada and Australia — two countries that have much in common — as the launch pads for discussion. The article’s first section investigates the approach and development of public diplomacy’s domestic dimension in both countries and draws out the similarities and differences. The second section identifies the opportunities, challenges and tendencies in its practice as well as the conceptual implications. The article finds that while differences in approach remain, Canada and Australia have more in common than not when it comes to involving domestic audiences in international policy, especially in recent years. Their practice of public diplomacy’s domestic dimension appears to be resilient and adaptive in nature, although it has been subject to fluctuations resulting from changes in the political climate, leadership styles and governmental preferences, and resource availability. Additionally, reconceptualizing public diplomacy with a domestic dimension and constructivist underpinnings opens the window on norms that are taken for granted in diplomacy and offers the potential for a more inclusive view and practice — a better fit for its time.

Caitlin Byrne and Jane Johnston

Public diplomacy is an inherently social endeavour, engaging public audiences at home and abroad to shape perceptions and influence foreign policy outcomes. Social media has a part to play in this, with sites such as Facebook and Twitter gaining visibility and traction as ‘must-have’ tools for public diplomacy 2.0. This article casts light on the less visible but pervasive social media platform of Wikipedia. Taking a case-study approach, the article posits that Wikipedia holds a dual relevance for public diplomacy 2.0: first as a medium; and second, as a model for public diplomacy’s evolving process. Exploring Wikipedia’s folksonomy, crowd-sourced through intense and organic collaboration, provides insights into the potential of collective agency and symbolic advocacy. The article’s findings highlight the limitations within current approaches towards public diplomacy 2.0, and offer new approaches for public diplomacy’s more progressive agenda.

Caitlin Byrne

Summary

Public diplomacy practice is intensifying across the Indo-Pacific as global actors compete to keep pace with the emerging geopolitical realities of a contested world order. China’s rise is the dominant feature. It comes as the United States retreats from global leadership, further heightening the sense of uncertainty in the region. Amid this strategic re-ordering, competition to influence narratives, set political agendas and frame the rules of a changing order is intense. The stakes for public diplomacy could not be higher and the implications for political leaders are significant. This article examines the role of Indo-Pacific political leaders through the lens of public diplomacy. While there are significant differences in approach, findings suggest that the imperative for political leaders to inform, engage and influence public audiences increasingly lies in the desire to shape the narrative and thus the nature of a regional order that will be favourable for their national interests.

Caitlin Byrne

Summary

Public diplomacy practice is intensifying across the Indo-Pacific as global actors compete to keep pace with the emerging geopolitical realities of a contested world order. China’s rise is the dominant feature. It comes as the United States retreats from global leadership, further heightening the sense of uncertainty in the region. Amid this strategic re-ordering, competition to influence narratives, set political agendas and frame the rules of a changing order is intense. The stakes for public diplomacy could not be higher and the implications for political leaders are significant. This article examines the role of Indo-Pacific political leaders through the lens of public diplomacy. While there are significant differences in approach, findings suggest that the imperative for political leaders to inform, engage and influence public audiences increasingly lies in the desire to shape the narrative and thus the nature of a regional order that will be favourable for their national interests.