A curated selection of public diplomacy-relevant news from a global cross-section of English-language media outlets, including independent, corporate-owned, and state-sponsored sources. The stories featured don't necessarily represent CPD's views nor have they been verified by CPD.
International Experts Discuss Sustainable Energy...at Astana Economic Forum
More than 4,000 participants from 100 countries gathered June 15-16 in Astana for the 10th annual Astana Economic Forum. The forum focused primarily on renewable energy and green economy under the theme “New Energy – New Economy” as well as discussions of sustainable economic growth, world trade and infrastructure. [...] This year’s key speakers presented their views at the session called Globalization: a Future Full of Uncertainties.
Dance Demonstration: Brazilians Samba to Protest Against Funding Cuts
Brazilians have organized a protest with a difference. Members of Rio de Janeiro’s samba schools danced their way through the streets of the city to demonstrate against proposals to slash funds for next year’s Carnival. They say Mayor Marcelo Crivella’s decision to cut by half (to 270,000 euros) the amount each school receives is driven by his religious beliefs. The former evangelical bishop and gospel singer plans to put the saved money towards child care centers.
Afghan by Birth, Indian by Heart
Coming from trouble-torn Afghanistan where peace has been no more than a pause between two wars in the last few decades, Sayed Qudrat epitomises how education can transform people’s perception and is important to usher in stability to a country besides promoting the individual’s well-being. [...] “I studied in Rehman Baba school in Kabul. When studying in Afghanistan, I used to think only of my country and Islam. Having come to India and on completion of my education, I think only of humanity.
In Germany, a New ‘Feminist’ Islam is Hoping to Make a Mark
Inside the red-brick building that now houses the German capital’s newest and perhaps most unusual mosque, Seyran Ates is staging a feminist revolution of the Muslim faith. [...] The inaugural Friday prayers at Berlin’s Ibn Rushd-Goethe Mosque came to a close — offering a different vision of Islam on a continent that is locked in a bitter culture war over how and whether to welcome the faith. Toxic ills like radicalization, Ates and her supporters argue, have a potentially easy fix: the introduction of a more progressive, even feminist brand of the faith.
Conservative Serbia Could Soon Have a Gay, Female Prime Minister
Serbia is not known for its gay-friendly policies. [...] This week though, Serbian President Aleksander Vucic made a historic decision: naming Ana Brnabic prime minister. If her cabinet is approved next week, she will become a double first: the country's first female and first openly gay head of government. [...] Vucic's selection of Brnabic is seen by many as a nod toward broader equality, and an effort to nudge his country closer toward the West.
Sculpture Marks Choctaw Generosity to Irish Famine Victims
Native American Choctaw leaders have arrived in Ireland to unveil a sculpture celebrating the financial contribution made by the tribe to starving Irish people in 1847. At the height of Ireland's Great Famine, Choctaws in southern states of the USA sent a donation of $170 (£111). [...] A million people died in Ireland and another two million left the country when the potato crop failed for successive years, removing a vegetable that poor people ate every day. [...] The Choctaw people empathized with Ireland's famine victims.
“Everybody Has Stories to Tell:” Creating Art Space for Children at National Gallery Singapore
Children need space to grow and art plays a pivotal role in creating not just any space, but a creative and conducive space. [...] This year, for the first time, the National Gallery of Singapore is making it possible. In its first Gallery Children’s Biennale, Singapore is leading the way in Asia to create space for children through art. The exhibition targets young visitors and it is curated in such a way that aim to captivate the imagination of the young: making art fun, interactive and accessible.
Tackling Global Problems? Look to Cities, Not Countries
To their credit, some cities are also investing heavily in diplomacy. The most effective of them are mapping their civic and commercial assets to determine their comparative advantage. They are also charting out a global vision that is linked to local interests and capabilities. Early adopters of city diplomacy such as Chicago, London, Montreal, Rio de Janeiro, Singapore and Toronto are teaming up with think tanks and private entities to build political, economic, cultural and security ties overseas.
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