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Soccer stadium image via iStock

What lessons might apply to LA and other North American cities as they prepare to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup and 2028 Summer Olympics?

 

David Ellwood, Senior Adjunct Professor of Johns Hopkins University, SAIS  Bologna, discusses the risks and opportunities of Persian Gulf countries' investments in Soccer.

New forms of international relations, where knowledge diplomacy is a significant soft power tool, are being shaped. 

Portland Comms Soft Power 30 Launch - 18 July 2017

Ambassador Tom Fletcher discusses the results of the Soft Power 30 report.

The Qatar crisis raises two issues in the field of international relations today. The first is to disprove the mainstream Cold War-era view that small states cannot play a significant role in global affairs. The second is that big powers always use hard means to take control of ambitious, small states in order to preserve the status quo.

Just as many fans have been grudgingly coming to terms with football’s new reality, Qatar Sports Investments shelled out the £198m to transfer Neymar from Barcelona. This hardly came as a surprise. Neymar is a phenomenal talent. But it is important to understand what lies behind this: governments from across Asia have been targeting football for some time as a means of building their global soft power and boosting their images.

Saudi Arabia announced on Thursday that it is reopening its border with Qatar to allow Qataris to attend the hajj, despite a monthslong rift between Doha and four Arab countries led by Riyadh that prompted both sides to trade accusations of politicizing the pilgrimage.

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