On this week’s episode of “What’s Next?” Maggie Feldman-Piltch interviews Matthew Wallin, ASP Fellow for Public Diplomacy, to discuss public diplomacy strategy and priorities for the next administration.
For Matthew, the most pressing challenge facing the next administration will be appointing the Undersecretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs at the Department of State. Although currently occupied, this position is frequently unfilled. If the incoming administration fails to appoint a new Undersecretary, there will be a lack of U.S. global engagement that will have negative consequences on U.S. positions around the globe.
Maggie and Matthew’s conversation highlights the impact of online public diplomacy on undermining violent extremism and the need to translate online initiatives into action. They also touch on how the new administration may approach Russia’s public diplomacy efforts. Matthew outlines how Russia’s laws limit the ability for the U.S. to employ traditional public diplomacy efforts, and how this negatively impacts U.S.-Russian relations and Russia’s power in the Baltic states. For both of these issues, the new leadership, or lack thereof, and the approach he or she takes to these contemporary challenges will set the tone for how the U.S. is perceived around the globe. And whether or not our efforts are effective will have a direct impact on the geopolitical balance of global powers.
About “What’s Next?”
“What’s Next?” is American Security Project’s weekly, non-partisan podcast series featuring interviews with national security leaders and critical issue experts. Each episode runs about 20 minutes- making it the perfect addition to your DC commute.
Hosted by Maggie Feldman-Piltch and produced by Matthew Wallin, the conversations go beyond the dinner party commentary and offer guests the opportunity to discuss their vision for security in the 21st century, the strategy that vision requires, and what it means for America going forward- in less time than it takes you to get to work. With topics ranging from geo-economics to nuclear security, cultural diplomacy to energy security and asymmetric operations, “What’s Next?” is one of the many ways ASP works to raise the American public’s understanding of complex security issues we face.