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Cultural diplomacy: the role of music and creative industry in establishing dialogue and understanding for social impact

Dorbayani, SM


SM Dorbayani



This cross-disciplinary critique of commercially available publications and releases exemplifies aspects of my practice as I have navigated through the roles of executive consultant, adviser, international songwriter and cultural diplomat over the past two decades. The five outputs (projects) explored are drawn from a large catalogue of more than 20 publications and over 100 credited original musical releases.

The commentary explores my methodology, including my unique technique, tactic and strategies in creating cultural and artistic products for social impact and Cultural Diplomacy. The outputs, which have been reviewed in both terms of publications and songs, received national and international recognitions, won international awards and they contributed significantly to not only the success of the causes, people, and organizations I collaborated with, but also to the expansion of original knowledge and practice on the subject matter.

My motivation behind the development of the submission is to showcase analytic details on how Cultural Diplomacy can be achieved at local, national and even international levels by creators of cultural products, and that how music and creative industry can facilitate economic growth, health, understanding and dialogue, and aim at social impact effectively.

Furthermore, my submission demonstrates the role of a Cultural Diplomat outside the political and governmental institutions, and it provides new augments that Cultural Diplomacy cannot and shall not be limited to those holding governmental offices or positions.
My cross-disciplinary critique, includes inputs from various forms of sciences, including: Political Theories, Public Policies, Social-economics, Anthropology, Arts and Culture, Business Strategies, and my own Practice and Published Works.

The critique also provides new and original definitions, methodologies and processes to the practice and adds new knowledge to the field of study as never shared or discussed before.

Culture lies at the heart of human development and civilization. Long before countries develop economic or trade ties; the art, literature and music united the nations. Centuries of creativity, migratory flows and exchanges enriched common values around the globe. Cultural cross-over forged common understanding and rules, which often have established peace, stability, prosperity and solidarity. (Dorbayani, 2019)

Today, cultural exchanges are as vibrant as ever. The advanced communication tools enabled cultural activities to grow wider, hence the demand for cultural goods is also spreading at unprecedented speed. Thanks to globalization, the exposure to more diverse cultures has increased, which heightened our curiosity, creativity and imaginations and improved our capacity to exchange with and benefit from other cultures – appreciating their contribution to the diversity of our societies. (Dorbayani, 2019)

While culture often points at fine arts, including a variety of works of art, literature, cultural goods and services, it also has an anthropological concept based on meanings, beliefs, values, and traditions, which are expressed in language, arts, religion and myths. Therefore, it not only plays a strategic role in human development, but also has a fundamental role in understanding the complex fabric of the identities, traditions, and habits of individuals and communities.

Culture is a genuine example of "soft power" (Nye, 2004), generated from norms and values such as human dignity, solidarity, tolerance, freedom of expression, respect for diversity, intercultural dialogue and values which, if upheld well, can be beneficial for humanity. Some current and former diplomats, academicians and writers try to make a distinction between cultural relations that grow naturally and organically, without government intervention, by preserving the term Cultural Diplomacy often for those formal diplomats serving national governments. (Waller, 2009)

The problem with making such distinction is that eventually it is not the politicians or political diplomats in the office who are creating the medium for Cultural Diplomacy or exchange, but the artists, writers, performers and their entire industry. Those voices, creative minds, contributors and performers are in fact the true savior and real cultural diplomats. (Dorbayani, 2019)


Dorbayani, S. Cultural diplomacy: the role of music and creative industry in establishing dialogue and understanding for social impact. (Thesis). The University of Salford

Thesis Type Thesis
Deposit Date Jul 8, 2022
Publicly Available Date Jul 8, 2022
Related Public URLs
Additional Information Additional Information : No part of this thesis may be reproduced in whole or in part in any manner without the written permission of its author and his publishers
Award Date Jun 12, 2022


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