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Foreign Governmental Institutions’ Social Media Communication Strategy in China

Author: ChenJunBo
Tutor: WangLingNing
School: Shanghai International Studies University
Course: Journalism
Keywords: Foreign governmental institutions Weibo diplomacy soft power socialmedia Sci-education communication
CLC: G206
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2014
Downloads: 119
Quote: 0
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With the development of the Web2.0technology, social media have been used inmany aspects of the society, including public diplomacy. Since2009, foreigngovernmental institutions in China have been using the flexible yet low-cost socialmedia platforms (especially Weibo) to integrate their public diplomacy resources, soas to conduct communication activities to spread their soft power and build theirnations’ images in areas like politics, economy, culture and so on.This study takes swissnex China (A Swiss governmental cultural organization) as acase example, by looking deep into its social media and academia communicationproject, analyzes the process, subject, content, audience’s feedback as well as theeffect of the whole social media project, based on the analysis and findings of otherprevious studies about foreign governmental institutions’ social media activities. Thestudy tries to deepen the analysis about foreign governmental institutions’ socialmedia public diplomacy communication activities in China from the perspective of“New Public Diplomacy”, combining the theories of “Image” and “Excellence Theory”in the PR field, and also the research framework of International Communication.Based on that, this study takes Weibo samples from the swissnex China, University ofSt. Gallen and HEC Lausanne’s Weibo accounts as the study samples and conductcontent analysis. Meanwhile, detailed interviews with swissnex China’s staff havebeen conducted to get to know about the details of this social media project. Thisarticle tries to discuss and conclude the experiences and lessons from the swissnexChina’s social media project, which is to conduct public diplomacy communication inthe science, innovation and education areas, but also to provide references andexamples for the Chinese government to practice public diplomacy in the culturalfield and deliver its soft power in other countries by taking advantage of the newcommunication technology.

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