Toth Co-Authors Study of Public Diplomacy, Public Relations

Professor and chair Elizabeth Toth is the co-author of a study that appears in the December 2009 issue of American Behavioral Scientist. The essay, entitled "Future Sociological Public Diplomacy and the Role of Public Relations: Evolution of Public Diplomacy," is co-authored with UM alumna Seong-Hun Yun, now an assistant professor at Dongguk University in Korea.

Yun and Toth's article introduces public diplomacy worldviews of realism, international liberalism, and sociological globalism, revisiting the traditional notion of public diplomacy as a two-step, cross-border, communication process. It predicts that sociological globalism will be a new background of future public diplomacy, in an era of people flow—migration. The predictions include: (a) Through direct and total contacts, soft power (attraction) does matter more than mediated messages about the attraction, and the openness of civil society will matter more than the role of governments; (b) sociological public diplomacy will become domesticated toward “inside border” foreign publics as part of government’s public affairs; and (c) the real substances of soft power in sociological public diplomacy will not be reserves at a country’s disposal but rather be “constructivist and fluid capacity” to create mutual trust and benefit.

ABSCitation: Yun, S-H., & Toth, E.L. (2009). Future sociological public diplomacy and the role of public relations: Evolution of public diplomacy. American Behavioral Scientist, 53, 493-503.

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