The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe.
Gustave Flaubert

Thursday 22 August 2013

Nation branding

Measuring, building and managing the reputation of a country, particularly with a view to distinguishing it from other countries. Bearing in mind the story told to me by a friend at INTA about a lawyer who had expressed surprise at learning that there are several different countries in Africa, it could be an art that ought to be more widely practised. Perhaps those countries which are doing it are those which least need to do so, like France which announced a national branding exercise on 28 June 2013, and specifically mentioned trade mark protection as a feature of the process. It even alludes to the trade mark aspect in the domain name,

In Britain, which pioneered the technique with the "New" Labour government's "Cool Britannia" approach (in turn based on the "Britain (TM)" pamphlet by Mark Leonard of the think-tank Demos) nation branding is referred to as "public diplomacy". Lord Carter's Public Diplomacy Review (December 2006) offered a redefinition of British public diplomacy (p 72):
work aiming to inform and engage individuals and organisations overseas, in order to improve understanding of and influence for the United Kingdom in a manner consistent with governmental medium and long term goals.

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