Public Diplomacy and Global Policymaking in the 21st Century

Public Diplomacy and Global Policymaking in the 21st Century www.pdgp21c.tumblr.com

www.twitter.com/pdgp21c
www.bakerinstitute.org/pdgp
www.youtube.com/pdgp21c In 2009, President Barack Obama expressed his desire for “a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition.” Based on Obama’s call, a group of undergraduates at Rice worked with the Baker Institute to create the Public Diplomacy and Global Policymaking Program.

The program links Rice undergraduates with their counterparts in the Middle East to discuss issues relevant to both sides ranging from healthcare and energy to foreign policy and media. Since its creation, the program has sponsored three cohorts of students to the Middle East. In summer 2010, 10 Rice students traveled to Cairo, Egypt, to engage students from the American University in Cairo. The f

The program links Rice undergraduates with their counterparts in the Middle East to discuss issues relevant to both sides ranging from healthcare and energy to foreign policy and media. Since its creation, the program has sponsored three cohorts of students to the Middle East. In summer 2010, 10 Rice students traveled to Cairo, Egypt, to engage students from the American University in Cairo. The f

Operating as usual

1st morning in Doha. Going to meet the President of Qatar University, Dr. Sheika Abdullah Al-Misnad!
03/01/2015

1st morning in Doha. Going to meet the President of Qatar University, Dr. Sheika Abdullah Al-Misnad!

The PDGP 2015 cohort getting ready to go to Doha!
02/27/2015

The PDGP 2015 cohort getting ready to go to Doha!

On Sunday, the PDGP students got to listen to an exciting lecture from Professor Nick Cull, the Director of the Public D...
02/10/2015
USC Annenberg | Public Diplomacy

On Sunday, the PDGP students got to listen to an exciting lecture from Professor Nick Cull, the Director of the Public Diplomacy program in the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Professor Cull discussed the origins of modern public diplomacy, analyzed its major components, and fielded questions form PDGP students about their own research projects. A big thank you to Professor Cull!

Learn more about the Masters Program in Public Diplomacy at USC below:

View an archived recording of the most recent Master of Public Diplomacy webinar. Professor Nicholas Cull discusses, public diplomacy, the degree program and the application process.

02/04/2015

The PDGP students are currently in Week 4 of classes. They are learning about the historical and socio-cultural context of the region. Readings include "Making of the Modern Middle East" by Michael Gasper and "The Study of Middle East Politics" by James A Bill.

And in case you missed the announcement, the PDGP 2015 students are:

Bo Kim
Chris Chu
Dante Zakhidov
Hurst Williamson (Student Director)
Jennifer Ding
Jesal Shah
Madeleine Tibaldi
Maithili Bagaria
Rebecca Satterfield
Sandra Lopez
Sevita Rama
Shilpa Nataraj
Caitlin Laird

10/24/2014

We have received and processed all of the PDGP 2015 applications. Thank you to those who applied and you should hear back from us in a few weeks!

10/22/2014

Just two days away from the PDGP 2015 application deadline! Submit your application material by emailing [email protected] by 11:59pm on Thursday!

10/20/2014
bakerinstitute.org

Remember that the deadline to apply for PDGP 2015 is Thursday, October 23rd at 11:59pm! Both application and recommendation have to be emailed to [email protected] in PDF format.

If you are struggling to with your research proposal, follow the link to read the PDGP overview!

We will be having our last info session about the program TODAY (Mon, Oct 6th) at 6:30 pm in the Hanszen Glass Classroom...
10/06/2014
Public Diplomacy | Rice University's Baker Institute

We will be having our last info session about the program TODAY (Mon, Oct 6th) at 6:30 pm in the Hanszen Glass Classroom. Come out to learn more about the class and application process!

If you have any questions you can visit the link below or email us at [email protected]!

Public Diplomacy - Faculty sponsorsKirstin R.W. Matthews, fellow in science and technology policyJoe Barnes, Bonner Means Baker Fellow Previous Years:Public Diplomacy & Global Policymaking in the 21st Century Program (2012 - 2013) The deadline for the 2014 PDGP cohort is Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013. Ap…

09/26/2014

Interested in applying for PDGP 2015? Attend one of our two info sessions to learn more about the application process, class, time commitment, trip to Doha, and end of the year research report!

Dates:
Tuesday, September 30th at 6:00pm
Monday, October 6th at 6:30 pm

Both info sessions will be in the Hanszen Glass Classroom. Remember you can always email [email protected] if you have any questions!

09/23/2014
The 2014 PDGP Doha Conference

Get excited about PDGP 2015! Watch the highlight reel from the 2014 conference in Doha, Qatar. Admitted students will also get to travel to Doha this upcoming spring to discuss with Qatari students and experience the city.

Twelve undergraduates from Rice University visited Doha, Qatar for a weeklong conference on policymaking and diplomacy with students from Hamad bin Khalifa U...

Public Diplomacy and Global Policymaking in the 21st Century has opened it's application for the 2015 spring semester! W...
09/18/2014

Public Diplomacy and Global Policymaking in the 21st Century has opened it's application for the 2015 spring semester! We are going back to Qatar this year. Application deadline is Thursday, October 23rd.

Application Requirements: Cover letter, unofficial transcript, academic resume (2 pg max), proposal describing research topic of interest to U.S. and Qatar (600 words), 1 letter of recommendation (academic), scanned copy of passport.

In addition to holding a week-long conference, the students also collaborated to publish the 2014 Doha Conference Report...
08/14/2014
The 2014 Doha Conference: Findings from the Student-led Public Diplomacy Program

In addition to holding a week-long conference, the students also collaborated to publish the 2014 Doha Conference Report.

Center for Energy StudiesCenter for the Middle EastMexico CenterChina StudiesDrug PolicyInternational EconomicsHealth Policy ForumLatin America InitiativePolitics & ElectionsReligion & Public PolicyScience & Technology PolicySpace PolicyTax & Expenditure Policy

08/14/2014
The 2014 PDGP Doha Conference

Twelve Rice students traveled to Doha, Qatar, during spring break for a week-long public policy conference.

This video highlights the unique experience of traveling to a different country and experiencing a new culture.

Twelve undergraduates from Rice University visited Doha, Qatar for a weeklong conference on policymaking and diplomacy with students from Hamad bin Khalifa U...

PDGP alumnus Sevita Rama found some interesting articles on the GITMO-Berghdahl exchange. Qatar played a crucial role as...
06/05/2014
How Qatar helped win Bowe Bergdahl's release

PDGP alumnus Sevita Rama found some interesting articles on the GITMO-Berghdahl exchange. Qatar played a crucial role as an intermediary in the negotiations.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Latest-News-Wires/2014/0603/How-Qatar-helped-win-Bowe-Bergdahl-s-release

http://time.com/2818090/gitmo-detainees-bergdahl-qatar/

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/closeread/2014/06/bowe-bergdahl-and-the-guantanamo-paradox.html?utm_source=tny&utm_campaign=generalsocial&utm_medium=facebook&mbid=social_facebook

US officials never actually spoke to Taliban officials in negotiating Bowe Bergdahl's release. All negotiations took place via Qatari intermediaries. When he was freed, it was 'not a giddy moment,' says one US official.

After three years of being the faculty advisor to PDGP, I'm stepping down this summer to let the program continue under ...
06/02/2014

After three years of being the faculty advisor to PDGP, I'm stepping down this summer to let the program continue under Dr. Ulrichsen. It's been an amazing experience and I loved working with all the students I've met through the program. Please continue to keep in touch, my door is always open. - Kirstin (aka Dr. Matthews, KM and K-EAR-styn).

05/15/2014

An interesting find from an old PDGP member, Sevita Rama! "many commentators have cited the Qatari government’s responsibility for labor-related abuses — which, according to a Guardian report, has resulted in over 500 deaths of Indian migrant workers since 2012 — few media outlets mention the importance of corporate responsibility."

This also relates to the whole talk Shell gave us on corporate social responsibility.

http://america.aljazeera.com/opinions/2014/5/qatar-labor-abusesworldcupmultinationalcorporations.html

further complications in sanctions against Iran and Russia
04/28/2014
Russia and Iran in Talks Over Energy Deal

further complications in sanctions against Iran and Russia

The deal, reportedly worth $8 billion to $10 billion, could undercut the efficacy of American-led sanctions against Iran.

Favorite Activity in Doha—Sand DuningMy favorite part of the Doha trip and conference was definitely the sand duning in ...
04/28/2014

Favorite Activity in Doha—Sand Duning

My favorite part of the Doha trip and conference was definitely the sand duning in the deserts outside Doha. Sand duning involved our group getting into massive Toyota land cruisers, driving into the desert, where our driver deflated tires and then proceeded to drive in, around, on the side of and on top of the sand dunes in the outskirts of Doha. The ride was absolutely exhilarating: up and down with sharp turns and steep declines. It was almost like a roller coaster ride, but not quite. While I, along with the other members of my group in the car, went from having instant expressions of surprise to glee, our driver seemed relatively unfazed. After our rides, we had the opportunity to step outside of our SUVs onto one of the dunes to see the sunset, near the border with Saudi Arabia.

The duning along with the dinner afterward on the beach allowed me to see Qatar outside the hustle and bustle of Doha, and the remarkable desert landscape truly amazed me. As I reflected over my first time in the desert for an extended period time, I realized not only the beauty of the desert (something I expected not to recognize), but also how quickly Qatar has risen to prominence on the world stage. The stark difference between cosmopolitan, populous Doha and the desert served to show the incredible wealth Qatar has invested into the country and its main population center. As the population of the country grows along with its economy, it will be interesting to see how much the desert will stay the same how much it will change.

—Shayak Sengupta

Favorite Activity in Doha—The Souq WaqifMy favorite part of our trip to Qatar was by far our trips to Souq Waqif. As som...
04/27/2014

Favorite Activity in Doha—The Souq Waqif

My favorite part of our trip to Qatar was by far our trips to Souq Waqif. As someone who has grown up in the teeming markets of Bangkok, I’m constantly searching for busy, street-side shopping districts in Houston that remind me of home. So far I’ve been unsuccessful in finding one, but the bustling atmosphere of Souq Waqif definitely came close. The number of street vendors who spoke Hindi, including Arab vendors, also pleasantly surprised me. Media outlets often present Qatar as mistreating its foreign workers, and to some extent this may be true, but Qataris’ effort to learn the language of its foreign workers shows the flip side of the coin—their respect for foreign cultures. I for one left Souq Waqif with a lot more regard for Qatar and a lot less riyals!

—Maithili Bagaria

Favorite Activity in Doha—Bus TravelMy favorite part of the Doha trip and conference was the time we spent on the bus. W...
04/26/2014

Favorite Activity in Doha—Bus Travel

My favorite part of the Doha trip and conference was the time we spent on the bus. While I’m being somewhat facetious in making that claim (especially since I get motion sickness), there is a kernel of truth in it. As Qatar, like Houston, is a fairly car dependent society, we (the Rice delegation) ended up spending a considerable portion of time traveling from one event to another on a bus. While that may not sound appealing in and of itself, our transit time provided us with ample opportunity to bond. In my experience, traveling with a group of students provides an opportunity to get to know one another in a deeper way, if only because of the extended hours spent together, and our time on the bus certainly provided those hours. Moreover, our relatively small number enabled us to converse together as a group, which quickly led to the development of a sense of camaraderie. Inside jokes and traditions began to emerge as we discussed matters (and policy issues) ranging from banally trivial to incredibly significant.

—Matthew Stampfl

Favorite Activity in Doha—Shell GTL Facility in Ras LaffanI really enjoyed visiting the Shell Pearl plant at Ras Laffan....
04/25/2014

Favorite Activity in Doha—Shell GTL Facility in Ras Laffan

I really enjoyed visiting the Shell Pearl plant at Ras Laffan. First, the drive to the plant showed us the truly brutal terrain on which Qatar is built. Even despite its wealth, Qatar struggles to sustain its population with water and agriculture. Because of its brutal desert terrain, it must import most of its food and desalinate most of its water. On the drive, we also got to see the extensiveness of the construction that is occurring always, particularly for the World Cup.

The Shell plant itself was fascinating to me. Studying Mechanical Engineering, I can appreciate the huge design challenges of creating something so massive and so efficient. The plant showed us the technical side to what has allowed Qatar’s economy to become what it is today. Part of what fascinated me about being in Qatar was the huge amount of wealth and the wealth’s very young age. Shell Pearl gave me a context for understanding this wealth. Imagining a Qatar without hydrocarbon resources is difficult, because virtually everything we saw on the trip relates in some way to the country’s production of natural gas, whether through funding or a more direct connection.

—Michael Donatti

http://dohanews.co/report-qatars-healthcare-sector-fastest-growing-region/“With improvement in living standards and heal...
04/25/2014
Report: Qatar’s healthcare sector the fastest growing in the region

http://dohanews.co/report-qatars-healthcare-sector-fastest-growing-region/

“With improvement in living standards and healthcare awareness in GCC, prevalence of communicable diseases is expected to decline. However, lifestyle-related diseases such as diabetes and obesity are likely to increase due to growth in per capita income and a sedentary lifestyle"

Factors such as the rising population, the rollout of a national health insurance scheme and a sedentary lifestyle are all expected to increase demand for health services here, the 2014 GCC Healthcare Report found.

FP article discussing the demands of Gulf states on Qatar to which Qatar has recently agreed after rejecting them last m...
04/25/2014
Making Qatar an Offer It Can't Refuse

FP article discussing the demands of Gulf states on Qatar to which Qatar has recently agreed after rejecting them last month. What changes with Qatar actually make in its support of the Muslim Brotherhood, in Al-Jazeera, and in its international research centers? http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/04/22/making_qatar_an_offer_it_cant_refuse_saudi_arabia_gulf_diplomacy

Saudi Arabia is setting new terms in the Gulf’s relationship with its wayward neighbor. But will Doha bridle at the deal?

After a two-year delay, Qatar's Hamad International Airport is finally set to open next week. Costing around $17.5 billi...
04/25/2014
New Qatar airport to open next week

After a two-year delay, Qatar's Hamad International Airport is finally set to open next week. Costing around $17.5 billion, it will ultimately be able to handle 50 million passengers and 2 million tons of cargo annually.

http://www.arabnews.com/news/560871

DOHA: Qatar’s new Hamad International Airport, a key part of its plans to become a regional aviation hub, will open to passenger traffic next week after construction delays of more than a year, the Ci

Favorite Activity in Doha—Visiting the US EmbassyMy favorite part of the Doha trip and conference was vising the U.S. Em...
04/24/2014

Favorite Activity in Doha—Visiting the US Embassy

My favorite part of the Doha trip and conference was vising the U.S. Embassy and meeting Ambassador Ziadeh and her staff. I had never given much thought as to what the application process for a foreign service officer might entail, and after hearing how extensive it is, have developed a newfound respect for all of these people. Additionally, I thought much of our discussion around public diplomacy was in agreement with what Ambassador Djerejian had discussed in “Changing Minds Winning Peace.” From hearing them both speak, I noticed that both of them have a great sense of humor, which they certainly bring to the table in their job and in building relationships with those in their office and other statesmen. Another thing that really struck me was how proactive the job of the Ambassador was in terms of being able to predict and understand the response and public opinion of local Qataris, as well as the White House to not only ongoing conflicts, but also unforeseen events. On a different note, I can still very much picture the landscaping surrounding and on the Embassy grounds. It was also very interesting to hear how the building had been converted into the U.S. Embassy and what that meant in terms of purchasing layers of bulletproof windowing and more.

—Katherine Cai

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/24/nyregion/interfaith-panel-denounces-a-9-11-museum-exhibits-portrayal-of-islam.html?hp&...
04/24/2014
Interfaith Panel Denounces a 9/11 Museum Exhibit’s Portrayal of Islam

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/24/nyregion/interfaith-panel-denounces-a-9-11-museum-exhibits-portrayal-of-islam.html?hp&_r=0

"The film, 'The Rise of Al Qaeda,' refers to the terrorists as Islamists who viewed their mission as a jihad. The NBC News anchor Brian Williams, who narrates the film, speaks over images of terrorist training camps and Qaeda attacks spanning decades. Interspersed are explanations of the ideology of the terrorists, from video clips in foreign-accented English translations.

The documentary is not even seven minutes long, the exhibit just a small part of the museum. But it has over the last few weeks suddenly become a flash point in what has long been one of the most highly charged issues at the museum: how it should talk about Islam and Muslims."

An advisory group of religious leaders said a documentary at the soon-to-open National September 11 Memorial Museum was offensive to Muslims and could generate prejudice against them.

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General information

Application requirements • A valid passport • Cover page (name and contact information) • Unofficial transcript • Academic résumé (2 pages max) • Proposal describing Research Topic of Interest between U.S. and Qatar (600 words) • One letter of recommendation (one academic)

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