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Innovating Public Diplomacy: The 2022 Ameri Prize

The USC Center on Public Diplomacy (CPD) announced the 2022 recipient of the Ameri Prize for Innovation in Public Diplomacy at a special award event on November 8 at the University of Southern California. The annual Ameri Prize honors U.S. foreign and civil service officers for creative and scalable initiatives that advance global public diplomacy. The program was established by CPD, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of State, to promote the practice and to further build the field at a moment when public diplomacy is needed more than ever.

The award event featured "In Conversation: The Next Generation of Interactivity and Storytelling," with David Van Eyssen, a pioneer in new forms of art, technology and storytelling. As the world enters the next phase of the internet, deeper digitization continues to change the way people are connected and how they experience their life-worlds. The imprints of digital technology on storytelling and the practice of public diplomacy are unmistakable. As we navigate the dynamics of innovation and convention, more attention is required to understand and use technology in more creative ways to upgrade public diplomacy engagement, from policy communication to cultural diplomacy. This discussion will explore how emerging platforms and tools create avenues to reimagine long-standing strategies and practices; why it is so important to invest in building and expanding useful storytelling capacity; and what lies ahead in the metaverse for generating new opportunities in public diplomacy.

About David Van Eyssen

David Van Eyssen is a recognized pioneer in new forms of art and entertainment. He was among the first to create high-quality, and critically acclaimed, dramatic series for the web, balancing the craft of filmmaking with the communications requirements of global brands. His diverse background as a painter, commercial and creative director, video games designer, series creator, writer-director-producer and, most recently, as a digital artist, informs a lifelong preoccupation with interactivity and storytelling. Working at the bleeding edge of expression and technology, he is currently developing a large-scale art installation for XR platforms, evolving a new visual grammar that merges volumetric and linear media with game theory. His latest venture is EMOTIV, a concept and production studio creating emotional engagement in the metaverse.


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