The wide reporting on this issue on both sides of the border highlights the key role of the media in international relations today. State actors are forced to react to situations/opinions formed as a result of media’s reporting and that creates a situation where media relations, media perception audits, media analysis becomes crucial professional skills that diplomats need.
As I had written before, the understanding of Public Diplomacy needs to be broadened and go beyond attractiveness of a nation’s brand, norms and values as explained by Joseph Nye. Perception includes all these and anything other than that. Public Diplomacy is not about charming alone, but also, has a lot to do with shaping and managing perceptions and INFLUENCE.
ATTRACTIVENESS → INFLUENCE
Indian policy establishment also need to move from focusing on “attractiveness” to “influence” if it’s serious about donning a larger role in the international system. Like global media, other elements like business, non-governmental actors, investment diplomacy et al need to co opted into a broader public diplomacy strategy. China is successfully doing it and results are there for all to see.