Purdue News

December 5, 2006

Communications expert to speak on corporate public diplomacy

Keith Reinhard
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Keith Reinhard, founder and president of Business for Diplomatic Action, a private-sector-led non-profit group aimed at engaging U.S. corporations in public diplomacy efforts, will help bring Indiana into the national discussion when he speaks at Purdue on Dec. 13.

The lecture, sponsored by the Purdue Center for International Business and Research (CIBER), the Krannert School of Management and the Department of Communication, will be from 1:30-2:45 p.m. in Rawls Hall, Room 1011.

Reinhard will give a feature presentation titled "Restoring America's Standing in the World – Why Business Must Engage in Public Diplomacy." The presentation will include relevant research, as well as discuss ways that Business for Diplomatic Action is working with corporations in global bridge-building efforts to foster new respect, trust and understanding for America with the world.

As president of Business for Diplomatic Action, Reinhard has testified to Congress and has been broadly featured in the media, from the BBC to CNN to "The Daily Show," and in publications such as The Economist, Fast Company, The Atlantic Monthly, The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune and The Financial Times.

"The decline in the image of the U.S. abroad poses major problems, with an increased likelihood that some areas will become breeding grounds for terrorists and that governments in others will support policies and actions contrary to the security interests of the U.S. and the competitiveness of American business," said Greg Hundley, CIBER director and Krannert professor.

"American corporations and managers, with their extensive exposure in nearly all countries around the world, are in a unique and powerful position to work to enhance U.S. global standing, thereby contributing to national security, as well as their own success."

Advertising Age has referred to Reinhard as the advertising industry's "soft-spoken visionary," and in 1999 named him as one of the top 100 industry influentials in advertising history. Reinhard was the creative force behind the McDonald's "You Deserve a Break Today" campaign and penned State Farm's long-running theme, "Like a Good Neighbor, State Farm is There."

"Keith Reinhard's presentation is geared to bring the conversation and discussion of the corporate role in the process of public diplomacy to the Midwest," said Jay Wang, who is leading the project on corporate public diplomacy for CIBER.

Wang, an assistant professor in the Department of Communication, said this event will kick off a series of research, learning and outreach programs in corporate public diplomacy spearheaded by Purdue CIBER over the next couple of years.

As a national resource center for the study of international business, Purdue CIBER works closely with CIBER programs at other major universities. Headquartered in the Krannert School of Management, Purdue CIBER programs also involve faculty from other units across campus, including the colleges of agriculture, engineering and consumer and family sciences, as well as the departments of foreign languages and literatures and communication in the College of Liberal Arts.

Writer: Maggie Morris, (765) 494-24327, maggiemorris@purdue.edu

Sources: Greg Hundley, (765) 494-4508, ghundley@purdue.edu

Jay Wang, (765) 494-3325, jianwang@purdue.edu

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; purduenews@purdue.edu


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