Wanted: Chief Marketing Officer for Democracy

The Donald McGannon Communication Research Center at Fordham University and the Communication, Culture, & Technology program at Georgetown University are co-sponsoring a four-part lecture series, titled Communications in an Unstable World. The first event in this series is titled , and takes place Tuesday, September 12th at 6:00 PM at the Copley Formal Lounge on the Georgetown University Campus. More information about this event can be found at: http://www.fordhamlectures.com/2006Fall/lecture1.htm

Continuing anti-American sentiment in response to globalization, the Iraqi war, and even the Danish produced editorial cartoons depicting the Islamic prophet Muhammad all seem to highlight the need for a Chief Marketing Officer of Democracy, a position responsible for managing the perceptions of free speech and other democratic ideals to those abroad. But how far should perception management go in supporting or explaining democratic values and US actions abroad - placement of pro US stories in Iraqi newspapers, censure of cartoons on the basis of religious sensitivity, using national security as a reason to disallow US cable companies from broadcasting Al Jazeera? This lecture will discuss the fine line between perception management and propaganda.

Invited Moderator:
Marvin Kalb, Senior Fellow, Shorenstein Center for the Press, Politics, and Public Policy, Harvard University

Invited Panelists:

Brian T. Conniff, President, Middle East Broadcasting Networks

Sheldon Rampton, Research Director, Center for Media & Democracy

Evelyn Lieberman, Director of Communications and Public Affairs, Smithsonian Institution

Richard Rubenstein, Professor, Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University