nation branding

The Foreign Ministry seized the opportunity to highlight the close ties between Morocco and the continent during the celebration of Africa Day on June 8, and lauded the Kingdom’s policies regarding co-development, sharing of expertise and win-win partnerships in Africa. The celebration of Africa Day was organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs under the theme “Morocco, An Actor for a Collective Emergence in Africa.”

A little bit crab apple, a little bit cherimoya, the ambitious atemoya hopes for soft power prowess and export success. When the atemoya (鳳梨釋迦)  was first exported from Taiwan in 2008, its sales quickly surpassed that of other Taiwanese staples, including mangoes and pineapples.

Finland became the first country in the world to publish its own set of national emojis in December 2015 on the country branding website ThisisFINLAND.fi, produced by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. A set of summer emojis was added to the selection on the Day of Finnish Identity in May 2016 and ahead of Finland’s two-year term as chair of the Arctic Council starting in May 2017. The Finland emoji collection has met with great success abroad, garnering numerous international awards and reaching about 240 million people through traditional and social media.

With the International Olympic Committee (IOC) set to have chosen Paris over Los Angeles as the site for the 2024 Olympics, it is timely to ask: Is hosting the Olympics good for a nation’s brand, and do they provide a good financial return on investment? [...] He also noted that the concept of nation-branding pervaded China’s handling of the 2008 Beijing games. “In China their goal was broad recognition as a leader on the global stage.” He said that China was largely successful, but that in terms of political reputation, the country was thrown into a negative light.

Recently an interesting debate arose over the fundamental meaning of branding. [...] The project's founder, Simon Anholt, is known for the concept of “nation branding,” also known as “place branding,” which seeks to enhance the images of nations much the way companies try to bolster the reputations of their products. [...] “My belief, backed up by much research (nearly 400 billion data points from 10 years of the Nation Brands Index), has long been that there’s no such thing as place “branding” and that countries are judged by what they do rather than by what they say."

Are there any limits to the channels and tools that a state can use to perpetuate narratives on national identity? Traditional approaches to what has been defined as nation-building have tended to rely on such things as studies of the use of the national language, school education, and political narratives. [...]  Indeed, cinema, large-scale events with hundreds of thousands of attendees, cultural initiatives, and even food narratives can be used to construct identity in a path that goes from traditional nation-building to what has recently been defined as nation-branding.

Brand South Africa in collaboration with the Gauteng Department of Economic Development, will host various stakeholders ... as part of its workshop to build South Africa’s competitiveness and a cohesive image of the South African Nation Brand. Government asserts that; “the Nation Brand alignment workshops are a critical part of achieving coordinated and coherent manner of presenting the country. This year we aim to further drive these conversations... making it inclusive and diverse with the core message, to build a strong Nation Branding.”

June 4, 2017

Why is culture important in this day and age? When the world, as some say, is becoming more flat, when social media platforms make instant communication possible, when cities all over the globe resemble each other more and more, of what significance is it that the Philippines should project itself as having a distinct identity and culture—in other words, possess a brand that is as easily identifiable as the Japanese, the Brazilian or the Egyptian?This is the question that cultural diplomacy poses, and which is the challenge given to Filipino diplomats in the 21st century.

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