Last April I wrote a blog post for Social Media NZ about how our Embassy engages in digital outreach using social media platforms. Those efforts are part of a larger initiative launched by Secretary Clinton to develop and institutionalize what she calls 21st Century Statecraft, by which she means harnessing and adapting the digital networks and technologies of today’s interconnected world to enhance traditional diplomacy.
The State Department has designated January as 21st Century Statecraft month and will run a variety of events to test, highlight, and leverage our evolving social media tools. We here at Mission New Zealand will run our own series of events including, if all goes well, a live webcast from the Ice with several of my scientist friends during my upcoming Antarctica trip.
If you follow me on Twitter, you are already aware that State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland will be answering live from her regular Friday press briefings questions received from the worldwide public through State’s 10 official Twitter feeds (@StateDept plus 9 non-English feeds). Video clips of the questions she answers will be subtitled in the languages of the original tweets and made available on the Department’s YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/statevideo .
At the center of the 21st Century Statecraft effort is my friend and colleague Alec Ross, the Secretary’s Senior Adviser for Innovation. Alec participated today in a LiveAtState video web chat with journalists, bloggers, and other commentators from around the globe in which he talked about conducting diplomacy and meeting challenges in a wired world. You can view the video above or read what Alec had to say here.
Alec has done great work back at HQ and in his travels, and I’ve been trying for some time to persuade him to visit us here in New Zealand. It looks as though the stars have aligned for him to headline a few events we’re planning later this year. Stay tuned.