Young Leaders´ Forums

Cultural Diplomacy & the Global Economy

February 2010
Day 1 - Monday, February 1st, 2010

An Introduction to the Field of Cultural Diplomacy
Mark Donfried, founder and director of the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy, opened the forum by presenting the CDEC participants with a lecture on cultural diplomacy and soft power. Peter Rees, managing director of the ICD, followed Mr. Donfried's lecture with an introduction to the leadership initiatives in which the participants would be involved throughout the week. These leadership initiatives give the participants a chance to discuss real-world solutions, in particular the potential for the establishment of economic bridges between countries. A video lecture by renowned political scientist Joseph Nye, in which he gave the participants an introduction to the field of soft power, followed Mr. Rees' presentation.

Cultural Diplomacy, Propaganda and Advertising
Mr. Donfried presented a lecture in which he explored the important and often subtle differences between different forms of cultural promotion, how to detect these differences and how to differentiate between each method. There are many different ways for a nation to export its culture and each method might have various motivations and intentions. It is important, therefore, to distinguish between legitimate cultural diplomacy and attempts to exert cultural influence for less positive intentions.

The Communication and Management of National Identity
Meike Eitel, a founding member of the Association for Place Branding and Public Diplomacy, discussed with the participants how national identity is broadcast externally and how the establishment of a national identity can be influenced and directed. A country's internationally perceived image is one of its most valuable assets, so a positive national identity is an important factor in determining how a country interacts with its international partners.

The Economic Crisis and the Response of KfW Development Bank
Leon Macioszek, head of KfW Development Bank's Berlin office and Vice President of it's Policy Department, and Christian Hornberg, a member of the Bank's Policy Liaison Department, spoke on the topic of financial cooperation and its significance in relation to and impact on bilateral cooperation in general. They also explored the importance of positive financial cooperation during global economic crises as a means of maintaining important multi-lateral relationships.

Nation Branding
Mr. Rees led the participants in a workshop where they were introduced to the process of establishing and promoting a positive national image. The participants were split into groups, given a country and were asked to develop their own nation branding projects, which they presented on Day 2 of the forum.

Day 2 - Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010

Energy Security and International Politics
The day began with a lecture by Enno Harks, a Political Analyst with Deutsche BP, in which he spoke about the relationship between the international political arena and global fluctuations in energy supplies, prices and availability. As the global community grapples with the environmental impact of its energy use, the impact of a growing population on resource availability and the unequal distribution of existing resources, international political action will be necessary. 

Nation Branding, Presentations
Mr. Rees moderated the participants' presentations of their finished nation branding projects.

Walking Tour: Exploring Central Berlin
After lunch, the participants were given the exciting chance to explore Berlin's city center and visit the area's landmark sites. Berlin's history is on full display in this area and the participants were able to literally walk through an important and globally significant history.

The OECD and Governance Rules for the International Economy
The participants were presented with a lecture by Heino von Meyer, Director of the OECD Centre Berlin, at the OECD Centre itself. Mr. von Meyer spoke about the role that the international organization could play in relation to the international economy, particularly as a rule making body. International organizations in general will increasingly play an important role as the world continues on the path of globalization, and exploring and defining this role is an important task.

Exploring the Reichstag
Participants got the chance to explore the historic Reichstag, the German Federal Parliament building, and take in the view from the Reichstag dome. This chance to view Berlin as it currently exists from a structure that has witnessed the city's long history gave participants a unique perspective on a dynamic city.

Day 3 - Wednesday, February 3rd, 2010

The Influence of Environmental Issues on International Politics and Economics
Dr. Susanne Dröge, head of the Global Issues Research Division at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, considered the ways in which environmental issues impact the international political and economic arenas. This relationship is reciprocal, and will be one of the defining forces for the global community in the near future.

Economic Bridges and Global Stability: Exploring the Relationship
Mr. Rees moderated a workshop in which participants were split into small groups and asked to discuss a number of questions relating to the Economic Peace Thesis. The small groups re-converged into the larger group and provided each other with feedback and their thoughts on the Economic Peace Thesis.

Who Should Shape the Future of the Global Economy? Governments, Civil Society or the Private Sector?
Nick Tolhurst, Managing Director of the Institute for Corporate Cultural Affairs, gave a presentation discussing the direction and distribution of influence and authority in the global economy. The complex relationship between national governments, civil society actors and members of the private sector have a significant impact on the global economy; this relationship was clearly illustrated in the recent global economic crisis. This impact lends the relationship special import and requires that these actors work together to maintain global economic stability.

Participant Presentations and Introduction to the Berlin International Economic Congress
Forum participants were given the opportunity to present on topics of their choice and areas of personal interest. Particularly memorable presentations included an examination of the negative impacts of the competitive nature of contemporary sports and an exploration of the issues facing South Africa and how to address these matters. Mr. Rees provided the participants with a brief introduction to the schedule and content of the BIEC.