Dr. Michael H. Anderson is a public diplomacy and Asian affairs specialist  with nearly 30 years of Foreign Service experience serving in the US Department of State and the US Information Agency (USIA) and working in South Asia and Southeast Asia.  His Public Affairs Officer (PAO) postings included New Delhi, Jakarta, Karachi, Singapore, Manila and Port Moresby. He also has been a journalist,  a teacher, a Peace Corps Volunteer in Malaysia, an information officer with UNICEF, and an East-West Center grantee.  He is a member of the PDC Board.

Pres Biden and PM Johnson in front of G7 sign

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. POTUS AND CODELS — THEY’RE BACK!: Both President (POTUS) Biden and Vice President Harris have taken their first foreign trips since assuming office to demonstrate that the United States is once again showing leadership and consulting with its friends. The President’s destination was Europe for the G7 summit in the UK, the NATO and U.S.-EU summit…

man in dark on laptop

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. THE PRESIDENT’S 2022 “WISH LIST” AND PUBLIC DIPLOMACY: President Biden has submitted his FY 2022 budget to Congress, and it requests a historic, mind-numbing $6 trillion to “help us build back better, leaving us stronger at home and on the world stage.” This request includes $58.5 billion for State Department and USAID, a 10 percent…

Ambassador Jean Manes official portrait

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. PUBLIC DIPLOMACY VETERAN RETURNS TO EL SALVADOR: It is always good to see when the services of an experienced PD professional are appreciated. The best recent example of this is Secretary of State Blinken’s May 26, 2021 designation of Ambassador Jean Manes as Charge’ d’ affaires ad interim to the Republic of El Salvador. She…

Xiao Qi Ji

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. THE PEOPLE-TO-PEOPLE SIDE OF INDIA’S GRIM PANDEMIC NEWS: The COVID-19 statistics that continue to come out of the United States and many countries are numbing. The depressing death figures for India the other day, for example, were hard to comprehend. The country reported more than 4,500 deaths in one day — the worst single-day, COVID-19…

Samantha Power at lectern

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. USAID GAINS SAMANTHA’S POWER: USAID has some 9,000 staff members working in about 100 countries. Many of these professionals, especially including public affairs personnel, must be very happy with their new Administrator, Samantha Power, the former U.S. Ambassador to the UN, war correspondent who got her start in Bosnia, and human rights advocate. She began…

Aircraft with USAID relief packages andU.S. officials in foreground

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. THE STRUGGLE TO REFORM PUBLIC DIPLOMACY STAFFING: As any PD officer knows, the effort to inform and influence foreign publics relies heavily on support from approximately 2,600 loyal PD Locally Employed Staff (LES) who do PD work in 189 U.S. missions around the world. Any attempt to reform their functions, structures, and position descriptions is…

Climate Envoy John Kerry with Secretary of State Biden at table

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. UNITED STATES PULLS OFF “LEADERS SUMMIT ON CLIMATE”:  This year’s “Earth Day” was different. It really was “Earth Days” — plural.  April 22-23, 2021 were rather remarkable days for the Biden Administration and U.S. public diplomacy. Timed for the annual “Earth Day” observance, the White House and State Department quite smoothly managed a two-day Leaders…

title Global Trends 2040

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. “GLOBAL TRENDS 2040” — TOWARDS A SCARY FUTURE? Intelligence reports — the rare ones that are unclassified and officially made public — aren’t always very helpful in explaining an issue or concern. They usually are cryptic and sanitized, and not very readable. But let me highly recommend one released April 8, 2021 by the National Intelligence…

Africans performing traditional dance

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. COMING UP: A COSTLY U.S. DEPARTURE FROM AFGHANISTAN?: For literally decades, one of the most challenging and frustrating jobs for U.S. diplomats, as well as the military and non-governmental organizations, has been trying to deal with the Afghanistan war and the Afghan government and the Taliban. Billions have been spent on various well-intended “nation-building,” “reconstruction,” and…