Citizen Diplomacy International Meeting #11

About Citizen Diplomacy International

Due to globalization, the internet, rising education levels, and long-term democratization, citizen diplomacy is growing, and becoming a more important part of diplomacy and international affairs.  Thus, in 2020, the Public Diplomacy Council of America (PDCA), a US-based NGO devoted to advancing the field of public diplomacy, formed the Citizen Diplomacy Research Group (CDRG) to advance the research and practice of citizen diplomacy.  In 2023, the CDRG became Citizen Diplomacy International (CDI), a network and program of Learning Life, a Washington DC-based nonprofit devoted to developing innovative learning communities in order to widen and deepen participation in democracy and diplomacy.  

CDI meets every three months online via Zoom for 1.5 hours to share research and news on citizen diplomacy developments worldwide with an eye to building a vibrant global CD sector for a more participatory, equitable and sustainable world..  Meetings typically begin with two presentations on CD research or practice, followed by discussion of the presentations, then news and announcements of past or upcoming international CD-related initiatives, publications, funding, conferences, etc. 

Anyone  — including scholars, students, citizen diplomacy practitioners, current and retired official diplomats, and others interested — can join CDI to learn, network, and/or present substantial research or practice in citizen diplomacy. For more information or to join the CDI email list, contact You can also connect with CDI members via our Facebook group and Linkedin group, to which you can post citizen diplomacy-related articles, books, events, funding, etc. 

For more about CDI, click here.  For the video recording of this CDI meeting at Learning Life’s Youtube Channel, click here.  Photos from the meeting above.  

Meeting Participants & Agenda

The meeting drew about 40 participants from at least 17 countries, including USA, Brazil, Spain, Italy, France, Netherlands, Austria, Greece, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan, Zambia, Qatar, Iran, Pakistan, South Korea, and Australia. 

1) Opening Remarks & Introductions  (10 minutes)

CDRG Chair Paul Lachelier will review the agenda, and during this time everyone is encouraged to post to the chat a one-paragraph bio about themselves.  Introductions via chat saves us time, provides written details about you, and allows us to share your info after the meeting with those who could not attend.  

2) Two Presentations (30 minutes): 

Anna Popkova, Associate Professor, School of Communications, Western Michigan University: “Exploring Citizen Diplomacy’s Local Impact: The Case of Global Ties Kalamazoo.”

Nicholas Cull, Professor of Public Diplomacy, University of California: “Information Disarmament: Citizens and the Forgotten Dimension of the 1980s US-Soviet Rapprochement.”

3) Questions & Discussion about the Presentations (35 minutes)

4) Announcements (15 minutes).  

A) Debbie Trent, CDRG Vice-Chair: Update on 2022 future CDRG meeting dates and planned speakers thus far.   

B) Amal Burbar, CD Bulletin Assistant Editor: The latest CD Bulletin.  

C) Meeting participants will have the opportunity to publicize citizen diplomacy events, publications, projects, programs, and related needs.  Participants can also post details and links to the Zoom chat box to share with the wider CDRG email list.