The Committee on Soft Power and the UK’s Influence held a roundtable event on Wednesday 9 April 2014 to discuss the issues raised by the Report.
The event was hosted by the Chairman, Lord Howell of Guildford. It was attended by, amongst others, Minister Counsellor Mark Tokola (Acting Deputy Chief of Mission, US Embassy), Dr Afzal Ashraf of the Royal United Services Institute, Ben Trim of the National Security Secretariat, Professor Dame Helen Wallace of the British Academy, Mike Lake CBE (Consultant Director, Royal Commonwealth Society), Thomas Kielinger of Die Welt, Peter Horrocks (Director, BBC World Service Group), Sir Richard Ottaway MP (Chairman, House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee), Emile Simpson (author of War from the Ground Up), Richard Burge (Chief Executive, Wilton Park), Dr Robin Niblett (Director, Chatham House), Sir Martin Davidson (Chief Executive, British Council), Hugh Elliott (Director of Communication and Engagement, FCO), James Robbins (BBC diplomatic correspondent), and Richard Norton-Taylor (The Guardian).
The participants discussed issues such as the roles of hard and soft power in the Ukraine crisis, and the part that the Government should – and shouldn’t – play in supporting the UK’s soft power.
A House of Lords Library note covering the event will soon be published.
The Government’s response to the Committee’s Report is expected in the next two months, and the Report and response will then be debated in the House of Lords.
Image: Parliamentary Copyright.