March 2012: The View From CPD

One of the many advantages of being based in Los Angeles is our proximity to the world’s most prolific media hubs. From up close, we can see content being produced, hear directly from movie and television producers, writers and directors and even personally encounter the individuals influencing the media landscape, some of whom – i.e. the co-founders of Invisible Children - were trained right here at the University of Southern California.

In addition to reviewing the main trends in public diplomacy this month, this issue of PDiN Monitor revisits the concept of film diplomacy with a particular emphasis on the impact it has on public opinion. Several assessments of the role played in cultural diplomacy by the film industry are provided in our “Experts Answer” Q&A section. Leila Nazarian takes a closer look at the Oscar win of A Separation and draws attention to the stark contrast between its triumphant success here and the Iranian government’s apparently indifference reception to the accolade. Finally, in her analysis of Invisible Children’s notorious KONY 2012 video campaign launched this month, CPD’s Public Diplomat in Residence Atim George views the movement and its detractors as “public diplomacy’s perfect storm.” As this sort of targeted viral social activism grows and reaches foreign publics, CPD will continue to follow these stories paying special attention to what it all means for the practice of public diplomacy.

We’re interested in hearing your thoughts on any of the articles in this issue, so please feel free to post them on our web site or send them via email to

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