Conference Locations:

The International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the USA 2012

"A Global Dialogue about Cultural Diplomacy, National Security and Global Risks"

(Washington D.C; June 26th - 28th, 2012)


Governments in the twenty-first century are faced with a variety of global security risks including terrorism, war and conflicts, stereotypes/ misconceptions and ideological conspiracies, to name but a few. These risks have manifested themselves in a variety of different ways, by actual violent attacks on citizens (such as September 11th, , and the Madrid and London bombings) as well as "verbal attacks" against the private and the public sectors expressed via the internet, social media, blogg, and protests..

Following the events of September 11th, national security issues have had a far greater significance in the field of international relations and domestic politics and are occupying the minds and concerns of Americans in considerable ways, including both American politicians and American citizens, as well as having a large impact on American foreign policy, trade and investment. In addition, the rapid changes in our global world ranging from the rise of the BRIC countries, the unrest in the Arab world, the Iran Atomic Program to the financial crisis, have created an even greater burden for national security, and is forcing the American leadership in both the public and private sectors to constantly reevaluate and re-assess their policy priorities and strategies.

Despite its vital importance, the use of cultural diplomacy in addressing global risks remains largely underutilized. In many ways, the application of cultural diplomacy practices can complement the other, more traditional ways of increasing security (military measures or increased access to intelligence), by means of exposing and challenging destructive ideologies.

The International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the USA 2012 will therefore focus on the role of cultural diplomacy in reducing global risks and increasing national security, in the context of international relations and international economics. The symposium will analyze and explore the opportunity of reducing global risks and increasing national security both in the USA and outside the USA by adapting cultural diplomacy practices into national and foreign policy strategies as well as private sector strategies.

Symposium Speakers »

Speakers during the conference will include leading figures and experts from international politics, academia, diplomacy, civil society and the private sector from across the world. These speakers will include a number of individuals from the ICD Advisory Board (for further information about the Advisory Board please click here).

Symposium Participants »

Participation in the symposium is open to governmental & diplomatic officials, academics & scholars, economists, journalists, artists, civil society practitioners, private sector representatives, young professionals and students as well as other interested individuals from across the world.

If you would like to reserve a position and participate in the symposium, please click on the "Apply Now" link below and fill out the online application form:

Certificate of Attendance

All participants will be awarded an official certificate of attendance upon completion of the program, which provides details about the speakers and topics at the conference. Each certificate will be signed by members of the ICD's Advisory Board.

ICD Alumni Program »

All conference participants will be invited to join the ICD alumni program. The “ICD Alumni Group” is an international network of like-minded individuals with an interest in further developing the field of cultural diplomacy through the support of intercultural relations. Participation in the group is by invitation only, and is open only to individuals who have taken part in ICD programs. Members of the ICD Alumni Group will benefit from the following opportunities (more)

Symposium Agenda »

The International Symposium will provide an opportunity to examine and analyze the increasing importance of soft power tools. The conference will also offer ideas as to how the US, as well as the rest of the world, can use smart power to more effectively tackle global risks.

The goal of the International Symposium on Cultural Diplomacy in the USA 2012 is to “inject” new momentum into the debate over the role of cultural diplomacy and its potential to assist in guaranteeing National Security and combatting Global Risks.

The following issues will be mentioned and explored:
  • US National Security in the Face of Global Risks - The Impossibility of Meeting the World’s Challenges and Risks Alone
  • The US Foreign Relations and of the Role of the US - Using Cultural Diplomacy to Improve the US Image Abroad (America as an ‘Indispensable Leader’ rather than an ‘Indispensable Nation’)
  • Cultural Diplomacy in Politics and Terrorism - Using the Full range of Tools in Interior and Foreign Relations
  • The Practice of Cultural Diplomacy and a Comprehensive Smart Power Strategy to Assure National Security
  • Civil-Society Movements and Ideological Conflicts - Cultural diplomacy as a Means of Promoting Civilian Participation in Diplomacy