November 19, 2011

Announcement: U.S. State Department Strategic Narratives Public Meeting

At the RAND Corporation in Santa Monica, CA, November 29

From the State Department Announcement:

The U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy will hold a public meeting on the topic of strategic narratives November 29, 2011, in Santa Monica, CA, in partnership with the RAND Corporation. The meeting will take place at the RAND offices at 1776 Main Street in Santa Monica, CA, in the Forum Auditorium. It will begin at 9:00 am and end at 3:00 p.m. with doors open for registration and continental breakfast at 8:30 a.m. The event will be webcast live and will emphasize open-forum question and response periods with the audience.

To attend, contact the RAND Corporation no later than November 21 by phone at (412)683-2300 ext 4906 or email to and provide your full name, citizenship (U.S. citizenship is not required to attend), and institutional/organizational affiliation.

Two keynote speakers and two panels will explore the topic of strategic narratives including what they are and how they might be shaped and countered. Conference participants will delve into the impact of words and actions on evolving narratives as well as the complex influence of environmental factors.  Keynote speakers for the event are Dr. Steven Corman, Herberger Professor and Director of the Center for Strategic Communication in the Hugh Downs School of Human Communication at Arizona State University, and Dr. Eric Larson, senior policy researcher at the RAND Corporation.

Two panel discussions will also be held. The first panel will include Dr. Nicholas Cull, Professor of Public Diplomacy at the University of Southern California; Barry Sanders, adjunct professor of Communications Studies at UCLA and author of the recent book, American Avatar: The United States in the Global Imagination; Dalia Dassa Kaye, Senior Political Scientist for RAND and Visiting Professor and Fellow at the UCLA International Institute and Burkle Center; and Philip J. Crowley, Omar Bradley Chair of Strategic Leadership at Dickinson College, the Penn State Dickinson School of Law and School of International Affairs, and the Army War College. The moderator will be Cliff W. Gilmore, Senior Military Advisor to the Advisory Commission.

The second panel will include Ambassador Richard LeBaron, Coordinator of the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications; Damon Stevens, Senior Advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense forPolicy and leader of Policy’s Global Strategic Engagement Team (GSET); Dr. Christopher Paul, social scientist at RAND corporation and author of Strategic Communication: Origins, Concepts, and Current Debates; and CDR Jonathan Worthington, UK Royal Navy, Head of Defence Studies Royal Navy. The moderator for this panel will be Matt Armstrong, Executive Director of the Advisory Commission.

The meeting will be open to the public, Members and staff of Congress, the State Department, Defense Department, the media, and other governmental and non-governmental organizations. To request further information, or to request reasonable accommodation, contact the Commission at (202) 203-7463 or


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