Detailed Information on the
Public Diplomacy Assessment

Program Code 10004600
Program Title Public Diplomacy
Department Name Department of State
Agency/Bureau Name Other
Program Type(s) Direct Federal Program
Assessment Year 2006
Assessment Rating Adequate
Assessment Section Scores
Section Score
Program Purpose & Design 80%
Strategic Planning 50%
Program Management 71%
Program Results/Accountability 47%
Program Funding Level
(in millions)
FY2007 $281
FY2008 $303
FY2009 $336

Ongoing Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments

Provide resource requests with direct links between funding levels and performance objectives and goals.

Action taken, but not completed The Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office has developed a Public Diplomacy Impact Performance Based Budgeting Pilot (performance based budgeting at the outcome level) and a global Mission Activity Tracker (activity based costing) that will track PD field based program and activity costs and that align to PD strategic goals.

Continue collection of data to support PD outcome performance measures.

Action taken, but not completed The Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office launched in Fiscal Year 2007 the Public Diplomacy Impact Project (PDI) focused on outcome measures. This project represents the first-ever attempt to quantify the aggregate impact of global public diplomacy activities. In Fiscal Year 2008, we plan to launch a second round with larger samples to collect outcome performance measurement and trend data among key public diplomacy foreign audiences.

Completed Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments

Complete development of performance measure framework. Obtain data for baselines and develop ambitious targets.

Completed The Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office has completed a comprehensive plan to gather output and outcome data for PD activities in the field. A Mission Activity Tracker has been pilot-tested and will be launched globally by the end of FY 2007. The first quantifable survey of the aggregate impact of PD activities is now complete. For the first time, standardized surveys are being placed on overseas Mission websites. This data is being used to set baselines and targets.

Develop strategic plan integrating public diplomacy programs in the Department of State. Institutionalize throughout Department.

Completed The Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office has established a comprehensive plan for PD evalaution, defined 15 core PD indicators and begun to phase them in to the Department's annual strategic planning process, and launched a global activity tracker to gather uniform data to support the core indicators.

Development of an overarching U.S. Government strategic plan for public diplomacy

Completed The Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs released a U.S. National Strategy for Public Diplomacy and Strategic Communication in June 2007.

Increased use of core PD performance measures by posts in 2010 Mission Strategic Plans (MSP)

Completed The Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office has developed guidance for the Department??s 2010 Mission Strategic Plan that recommends use of the 15 public diplomacy performance measures. For the 2010 MSP process, Posts are encouraged to incorporate one or more of the performance measures in their MSP Public Diplomacy Goal Papers.

Program Performance Measures

Term Type  
Annual Efficiency

Measure: Program Funds as a Percentage of the Total Public Diplomacy Budget

Explanation:Reveals the efficiency of public diplomacy through the average amount of total Public Diplomacy funding that is allocated to program activities in all geographic regions. A higher percentage indicates that more funds are being spent on programs and fewer funds are being spent on other costs such as administrative costs.

Year Target Actual
2003 Baseline 39%
2004 40% 40.2%
2005 41% 41%
2006 42% 41%
2007 43% 29.7%
Annual Output

Measure: Key audience reached through exchange programs -- number of foreign participants.

Explanation:Represents the global count of participants directly exchanged between the United States and other countries. Regional and country-specific breakdowns are available. Overseas missions work extensively at marketing programs to ensure that recruitment and selection is targeted to key audiences. For some programs, overseas missions select participants directly.

Year Target Actual
2002 Baseline 25,183
2003 Adjusted baseline 23,367
2004 19,256 21,552
2005 19,663 22,880
2006 22,550 26,669
2007 28,000 38,096
2008 35,000
2009 35,000
Annual Output

Measure: Audience reach through mission outreach activities

Explanation:Number of people reached through interactive embassy sponsored and administered events (such as presentations at American Corners, Rhythm Road concerts, etc.) and presentations by embassy staff.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline Avail Qtr 4 FY 2009
Annual Output

Measure: Audience reach through interactive alumni website

Explanation:As alumni of various public diplomacy initiatives gain status and influence, it is important to ensure that they are still connected with the United States. This measure tracks the number of alumni registered on the Public Diplomacy alumni web site. Missions have front-line responsibility for encouraging alumni to register.

Year Target Actual
2002 Baseline 1910
2003 2,500 6,302
2004 10,000 10,380
2005 15,000 16,253
2006 20,000 21,328
2007 23,000 25,316
2008 26,000
2009 28,000
Annual Output

Measure: Timeliness of U.S. Government response to negative foreign media regarding U.S foreign policy issues.

Explanation:Public diplomacy's ability to improve the timeliness of producing and coordinating U.S. Government interagency response to negative foreign media coverage of U.S. foreign policy issues. This measure focuses on the timeliness of the Rapid Response Unit - a public diplomacy activity created to ensure a quick U.S. Government response.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 4.5
2008 4.6
2009 4.6
2010 4.7
Annual Output

Measure: Consistency of U.S. Government response and messaging to negative foreign media regarding U.S. foreign policy issues.

Explanation:Greater levels of consistency ensure that a more effective U.S. Government message is communicated by Senior Cabinet officials and other USG officials in response to negative foreign media coverage of key U.S. foreign policy issues. This measure will focus on the Rapid Response Unit's impact in ensuring that there is a consistent U.S. Government response to negative foreign media coverage of U.S. foreign policy issues.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline Avail Qtr 4 FY 2009
Annual Outcome

Measure: Accurate/favorable portrayals of U.S. policies in key foreign media (i.e. print, radio, web, T.V.) outlets.

Explanation:Quality measure that indicates increases in the level of accuracy and/or positive coverage of U.S. policies in foreign media as a result of media outreach activities in overseas missions. The net impact of media outreach activities conducted by public diplomacy staff and offices located in overseas missions.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline Avail Qtr 4 FY 2009
Annual Outcome

Measure: Reduction in level of anti-American sentiment among key foreign audiences

Explanation:Public diplomacy is responding to an immediate problem of high levels of anti-American sentiment among key foreign audiences. Overseas missions first identify key foreign audiences in the host country and then conduct public diplomacy activities to increase understanding of U.S. policies, society and values among those with the goal of reducing the level of anti-American sentiment. Reductions in anti-American sentiment will be measured using surveys and focus groups to assess differing levels of anti-American sentiment between participants and non-participants of US public diplomacy activities.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 17%
2008 18%
2009 19%
2010 20%
Annual Outcome

Measure: User satisfaction Scores of US Embassy Web Sites

Explanation:The American Customer Satisfaction Index, the gold standard of satisfaction measurement, is an independently validated and verified econometric model used to measure customer satisfaction. The measure is applied to a sample of US Embassy websites to measure foreign audience satisfaction with content, accuracy, value and clarity of information presented. Beginning in FY 2006, measure will be the average score of 10 priority web sites.

Year Target Actual
2004 Baseline 67
2005 70 70
2006 71 71.5
2007 72 67
2008 73
2009 73
2010 74
Annual Outcome

Measure: Audience with an improved or increased understanding of U.S. policies, society and values.

Explanation:Public diplomacy's mission is to inform foreign publics about the United States and its society and policies. Improved or increased understanding of U.S. policies, society and values, demonstrates the ability of public diplomacy to explain U.S. policies and culture, thereby creating an environment receptive to dialog.

Year Target Actual
2003 Baseline 65%
2004 70% 71%
2005 72% 68%
2006 74% 72%
2007 75% 87%
2008 80%
2009 80%
2010 82%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Incorporation of U.S. sponsored information materials into key local institutions in host country.

Explanation:Usage of, or the adoption of, public diplomacy materials (various print or electronic resources, including teaching materials) by key local foreign institutions in host country.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 76%
2008 77%
2009 78%
2010 79%
Annual Outcome

Measure: Program participant (key/target audience) satisfaction scores of public diplomacy programs and public outreach activities.

Explanation:Key/target audience satisfaction scores on the quality and usefulness of, based on their participation in, Mission sponsored public diplomacy programs and/or Mission public outreach activities.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 73%
2008 75%
2009 75%
2010 76%
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Initiation of positive change to local organization or community by audience.

Explanation:"Positive change" reflects a tangible, measurable action taken by a key audience to directly apply knowledge gained from a public diplomacy activity. The measure assesses the long term impact of public diplomacy activities to engage, inform and influence key audiences. Positive change" tracks behavioral change and the application of knowledge gained from public diplomacy activities to local foreign institutions, community groups, government, or civil society organizations by the recipients and beneficiaries of public diplomacy programs

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 64%
2008 66%
2009 66%
2010 68%
2011 68%
2012 68%
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Favorability rating of U.S. society, values, and policies among key Public Diplomacy foreign audiences

Explanation:This measure assesses the long- term impact of Mission and Washington Bureau public diplomacy activities in improving foreign publics understanding and appreciation of the United States, and its society and policies. This measure also indicates the impact of public diplomacy activities in reducing levels of anti-Americanism in key foreign countries.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 73%
2008 74%
2009 75%
2010 75%
2011 75%
2012 75%
Long-term Outcome

Measure: Editorial and opinion commentary support for U.S. policies and positions.

Explanation:Average score of media reaction in the editorial and op-ed sections of major dailies rated on a scale from 1 to 10. 1 being highly critical, and 10 being highly supportive of U.S. policies and positions.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline Avail Qtr 4 FY 2009

Questions/Answers (Detailed Assessment)

Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design
Number Question Answer Score

Is the program purpose clear?

Explanation: The purpose of Public Diplomacy is to: (1) Inform (2) Engage and (3) Influence key foreign audiences to advance American national interests abroad. In pursuing these purposes, the program ensures a better appreciation for the United States abroad and greater receptivity for U.S. policies among international publics. To execute the these purposes, the Office of the Under Secretary provides strategic leadership and inter-agency coordination in Washington, and the Public Affairs Officer (PAO) leads public diplomacy efforts in the field missions.

Evidence: The three purposes of public diplomacy originate from the following legislation and administrative mandates: Inform: a) Smith-Mundt Act (basic legislative authority for public diplomacy); Engage: b) Fulbright-Hays Act of 1947 (mandates the Department to foster mutual understanding with foreign publics); Influence: Smith-Mundt Act; Fulbright-Hays; c) Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act 1998 (states purpose of merger of USIA and States and delegates authorities to Under Secretary) Direct authority to implement public diplomacy is also found in the following: d) Foreign Affairs Manual (responsibilities of Under Secretary); e) Stephen Hadley (National Security Advisor) Memo of April 8, 2006 (confirms Under Secretary as chair of interagency committee on public diplomacy).

YES 20%

Does the program address a specific and existing problem, interest, or need?

Explanation: The public diplomacy program plays a critical role in the creating understanding and developing support for U.S. policies from international publics, social influencers, and key audiences. This support is critical to the implementation of U.S. policy abroad. In addition, the public diplomacy program helps lessen hostilities towards the United States. More specifically, public diplomacy combats anti-Americanism and creates environments for dialogue. Recent studies indicate that anti-Americanism is deeper and broader today than at any other time in modern history. The Department of State's public diplomacy efforts address the problem of anti-Americanism abroad through a range of programs that inform, engage, and influence key foreign audiences, particularly in Muslim countries.

Evidence: a) Chapter 12 of the 9/11 Commission Report outlines the need for the U.S. to engage foreign publics through public diplomacy in order to reduce Anti-Americanism and promote greater understanding of the U.S (http://www.9-11commission.gov/report/911Report_Ch12.htm). b) The Pew Research Center also outlines the problem of anti-Americanism (http://people-press.org/ (anti-American sentiment in global polling).

YES 20%

Is the program designed so that it is not redundant or duplicative of any other Federal, state, local or private effort?

Explanation: Due to the complexity of the purpose and size of the international audience, one agency can not handle the engagement of foreign publics by itself. As a result, each agency uses different mechanisms to reach different target beneficiaries. Through coordination in Washington and in the field, the interagency efforts are mutually reinforcing rather than duplicative. From an interagency perspective, the Department of State has been assigned the lead role to articulate both the foreign policy objectives of the United States and democratic values to foreign audiences. In Washington, for instance, the Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy has been assigned the leadership role of chairing the interagency Policy Coordinating Committee on Public Diplomacy and Strategic Communication and by Presidential mandate, coordinates public diplomacy efforts across the U.S. Government to ensure that they are not duplicative. In foreign countries, the State Department's public affairs officer is the mission's lead public diplomacy outreach officer. The public affairs officer oversees the work that enables many public diplomacy outreach programs to engage, inform, and influence foreign publics.

Evidence: a) The Foreign Affairs Manual outlines the responsibilities of Under Secretary within the Department; b) Stephen Hadley (National Security Advisor) Memo of April 8, 2006 (confirms Under Secretary as chair of interagency committee on public diplomacy and outlines interagency responsibilities of Under Secretary). c) American Corner Site Selection Check List (example of responsibilities of PAO to implement Washington-funded program; d) Mission organizational diagram supports the role of the public affairs officer in the field

YES 20%

Is the program design free of major flaws that would limit the program's effectiveness or efficiency?

Explanation: According to OIG inspections and reviews, there are no major design impediments that limit the program's effectiveness or efficiency. Furthermore, none of the extensive number of independent reports about public diplomacy have provided measurable evidence that another approach would be more effective in achieving public diplomacy goals. In particular, the General Accounting Office (GAO) has made recommendations for improvement, but has not questioned the fundamental approach to public diplomacy. In recent years, the program has addressed minor flaws raised in reports and reviews to continuously increase efficiency and effectiveness. For example, in order to adapt more private sector practices, the Under Secretary created an office of public-private partnership and has undertaken initiatives utilizing private sector best practices. To develop country-level communications plans, the program has engaged in strategic planning in pilot countries. To establish a systematic mechanism to share best practices data, the program launched an intranet website (InfoCentral) that encourages interaction among public diplomacy practitioners. Moreover, a network of new measures have been put in place to ensure efficient and effective program operations. To expand the program's evaluation capacity, a new Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office was established. Public Diplomacy Deputy Assistant Secretaries were established in all regional bureaus, and joint Chief of Mission and Public Affairs Officer conferences (heretofore held separately) were created to facilitate public diplomacy synergy.

Evidence: a) Public diplomacy performance measure logic model; b) 2000 and 2004 Global Public Diplomacy Field Surveys; c) OIG reports and inspection comments; d) Report from surveys from the joint COM-PAO conferences; e) GAO Report (GAO-06-535) U.S. Public Diplomacy State Department Efforts to Engage Muslim Audiences Lack Certain Communication Elements and Face Significant Challenges; f) Under Secretary Hughes and Private Sector CEO Delegation to Pakistan.

YES 20%

Is the program design effectively targeted so that resources will address the program's purpose directly and will reach intended beneficiaries?

Explanation: The public diplomacy program, as a whole, does not have mechanisms in place that ensure that resources are being used directly to reach the targeted beneficiaries. To address this problem, the public diplomacy program recently initiated a survey of public affairs officers and chiefs of mission to ensure that the right beneficiaries were being targeted (see item A of evidence). The next step to ensure that the program resources are effectively targeted will be to study how well resources are linked with target audiences and performance outcomes. Institutionalizing both the evaluation of target audiences and the linkage between resources and intended beneficiaries will be critical to ensuring that the program is effectively targeted in the long term.

Evidence: a) PAO-COM Survey (field input to fine-tune priority audiences); b) Fact Sheet on Murrow Program (a program developed to address an identified need); c) Murrow Surveys (survey of participants in inaugural program); d) Karen Hughes' six month plan; e) PLUS case study

NO 0%
Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design Score 80%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning
Number Question Answer Score

Does the program have a limited number of specific long-term performance measures that focus on outcomes and meaningfully reflect the purpose of the program?

Explanation: The public diplomacy program has three outcome measures that meaningfully capture long-term progress. The measures focus on the ultimate outcome of program efforts to engage and inform; influencing opinions and behavior change. The three long-term outcome measures are 1) improving editorial and opinion commentary support for U.S. policies and positions, 2) improving the level of favorability of foreign audiences to U.S. society, values, and policies, and 3) increasing the number of "positive changes" to local organizations or communities conducted by program participants. The first measure focuses on the program's progress made to influence the local media in foreign countries, one of the most critical key audiences. This measure reflects how supportive foreign press commentaries are of U.S. policies and positions. Success in with this key audience is essential to the achievement of another long term outcome: the favorability of foreign audiences to U.S. policies. The second outcome indicator focuses on measurign the success of efforts to engage and influence by measuring foreign audiences' appreciation of U.S. society, values, and policies. Given the difficulty in reaching the audiences and current prevalence of anti-American attitudes, changes in the favorability ratings can take years to achieve. The third measure reflects the ability of the program to influence participants to the extent that they take concrete actions to directly apply knowledge gained from a public diplomacy activity. The change can be directed toward positive improvements to local institutions, community groups, government, or civil society organizations. The public diplomacy program employs a logic model framework to directly link resources, activities, outputs and outcomes (both annual and long-term).

Evidence: a) Long term outcome measures listed b) Logic model relationship between resources, outputs, outcomes (short, medium, ultimate) c) State-US AID Joint Performance Plan, Bureau Performance Plans, Mission Performance Plans

YES 12%

Does the program have ambitious targets and timeframes for its long-term measures?

Explanation: Because two of the three measures have been recently established, clear baselines and ambitous targets are under development. The new Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office is in the process of designing a data collection system to support public diplomacy's standardized set of outcome performance measures. Baselines and targets will be established through this process and will support the remaining long-term performance measures.

Evidence: a) State-US AID Joint Performance Plan, b) Bureau Performance Plans, c) Mission Performance Plans

NO 0%

Does the program have a limited number of specific annual performance measures that can demonstrate progress toward achieving the program's long-term goals?

Explanation: Public diplomacy has twelve annual measures that frame progress toward the long-term goals. Given the difficulty in measuring outcome progress in the short term, several output measures are included to provide a direct link between program activities and outcomes. For example, three annual output measures reflect outreach for program activities in exchanges, mission activities/events, and program alumni networking. These measures reflect increasing the size of key audiences, which leads to improved attitudes and behavior in the medium and long term. Two annual output measures on the timeliness and consistency of U.S. Government responses to negative media track improvements in internal processes that directly lead to annual and longer term outcomes. Six annual outcome measures then frame different categories of progress that directly link to the long-term measures. These measures can be categorized in three areas: 1) satisfaction of participants, 2) immediate improvement in understanding, and 3) immediate improvements in media activities. The public diplomacy program uses a comprehensive performance framework (logic model) to directly link annual outputs such as improved reach and activities to knowledge gained and attitudes changed (annual outcomes) which are followed by intermediate behavioral changes in the longer term (long-term outcomes).

Evidence: a) List of annual performance measures, b) State-US AID Joint Performance Plan; c) Bureau Performance Plans, d) Mission Performance Plans

YES 12%

Does the program have baselines and ambitious targets for its annual measures?

Explanation: Because seven of the twelve measures have been recently established, clear baselines and targets have yet to be developed. The new Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office is in the process of designing a data collection system to support public diplomacy's standardized set of outcome performance measures. Baselines and targets will be established through this process and will support the remaining annual and long-term performance measures. The five annual measures with baselines and targets include the efficiency measure, two outputs regarding reach, and two outcomes addressing increased understanding and participant satisfaction.

Evidence: a) Joint Performance Plan b) Bureau Performance Plans, c) Mission Performance Plans, d) Performance and Accountability Report

NO 0%

Do all partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, and other government partners) commit to and work toward the annual and/or long-term goals of the program?

Explanation: The goals of the program are clearly communicated to all public diplomacy partners (including grantees, contractors, other government partners, etc.) and are incorporated into every aspect of the public diplomacy program, both in Washington and in the field. Specific program activities, whether media outreach, U.S. speakers, or exchange programs, are conducted with partners to support the annual and long-term goals of public diplomacy. Weekly country team meetings at each mission ensure that all public diplomacy partners are committed to the program goals. All are committed to public diplomacy's goals of: 1)informing (presenting a positive vision of hope based on the President's Freedom Agenda); 2)engaging (linking foreign individuals and groups with their American counterparts through common values and interests) and; 3)influencing (isolating and marginalizing extremists and their ideologies) key foreign audiences. For example, the Under Secretary's Office issues regular guidance to relevant Washington bureaus and the field focused on one or more of the goals. Grants issued directly by missions to local partners contain goal and performance reporting requirements. Project solicitations and contract documents issued by Washington have performance measures and legally oblige granting/contracting organizations to meet the projects' goals. All grantees, both in Washington and in the field, sign detailed commitments to ensure their work is completed and will support public diplomacy's program goals. The Public Diplomacy Evaluation office regularly selects programs to evaluate and assess whether or not public diplomacy goals are being met.

Evidence: a) White House Memorandum on establishment of Policy Coordination Committee; b) Grant document example from post; c) MOU for PA program; d) Grant solicitation; e) IBUCKS overview; f) English language teaching material placed in China from VOA

YES 12%

Are independent evaluations of sufficient scope and quality conducted on a regular basis or as needed to support program improvements and evaluate effectiveness and relevance to the problem, interest, or need?

Explanation: Public Diplomacy uses independent professional evaluators, selected through a competitive process, to assess the impact and outcomes of its Washington and field based programs. A multi-year program evaluation plan is developed every three years and adjusted as necessary to ensure that a representative set of programs are evaluated each year. Additionally, each year a set of evaluation projects are created to assess a strategic and or specialized public diplomacy activity. The Public Diplomacy Evaluation Office evaluates every major public diplomacy program once every five years. Recent evaluations include: Hi Magazine, ACCESS English Language Microscholarships and American Corners. Based on the findings of a recent assessment of Hi magazine, PD leadership eliminated the program and diverted the funding to more competitive programs. Methodology for all evaluations (contracted or through the PD Evaluation Office) are reviewed for quality and appropriateness by a team of professional evaluators within the evaluation office. Social science research analysts from the Office of Research and the Office of Inspector General participate in the quality reviews. Quality control mechanisms ensure that evaluation methods include quasi-experimental design (comparison groups), pre and post surveying, and multi-site data collection in order to validate the data and assess program outcomes. Statistical sampling is also used to increase validity in the evaluations. Performance measurement assessments are core components of each evaluation.

Evidence: a) Memo creating the office; b) statements of work for American Corners, c) ACCESS Microscholarships; d) draft Hi Magazine report; e) schedule for 2006, f) Copy of initial American Corners Evaluation; g) PDEC charter and establishment memo; h) OIG inspections/evaluation examples; j) R/PPR evaluation schedule; k) ACSI Reports; l) Omnibus Appropriations Act FY 05 Conference Report 108-792 page 820

YES 12%

Are Budget requests explicitly tied to accomplishment of the annual and long-term performance goals, and are the resource needs presented in a complete and transparent manner in the program's budget?

Explanation: Public diplomacy programs currently do not explicitly tie resource requests to the accomplishment of annual and long-term performance goals. More specifically, budget requests to OMB and Congress do not explicitly link direct or indirect resource levels to annual or long-term outcome targets identified in the public diplomacy performance measure framework.

Evidence: a) Quarterly management reports; b) PD obligation coding document; c) Senior review process;d) PD FY 2008 MPP guidance; e) FY 2007 Budget Justification for Foreign Operations;f) FY 2007 Congressional Budget Justification.

NO 0%

Has the program taken meaningful steps to correct its strategic planning deficiencies?

Explanation: The lack of a strategy that integrates the diverse public diplomacy programs is the core deficiency in the planning framework for public diplomacy. The Office of Management and Budget and the General Accounting Office have cited this on a number of occasions over the past few years. While the public diplomacy program has addressed some of the peripheral issues regarding coordination, the lack of a strategic plan for the State Department public diplomacy efforts remains a core deficiency. While the development of a general vision for all public diplomacy programs within the State Department represents a starting point, a strategic plan that integrates the main public diplomacy programs (exchanges, international information programs, field programs, and Washington based efforts) is still necessary. A strategic plan that integrates the different programs would allow the State Department to design public diplomacy activities from a common starting point and provide a more direct path to achieving goals and objectives. Once established, the strategic plan should be institutionalized throughout the different State Department public diplomacy areas to ensure that it is integral to program development, implementation, and evaluation processes. This would also allow the Under Secretary to better identify resource tradeoffs that would improve results.

Evidence: a) Public Diplomacy Strategy (2003/2004); b) Example of Rapid Response Unit Report; c) Example of Echo Chamber; d) White House Memo on Policy Coordination Committee; e) R/PPR establishment memos;f) PD tradecraft curriculum; g) MPP reviews; h) OIG summary report; i) 90-Day PD calendar and plan; j) R MPP guidance cable; k) announcement of combined PDEO; l) agenda from COM-PAO meetings

NO 0%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning Score 50%
Section 3 - Program Management
Number Question Answer Score

Does the agency regularly collect timely and credible performance information, including information from key program partners, and use it to manage the program and improve performance?

Explanation: The program has just established a performance measurement framework, so baseline performance data and targets are not yet available. There is no direct evidence that the program uses performance data to adjust priorities or to allocate resources.

Evidence: a) Evaluation and reporting inventory; b) Reporting cable (speaker, IV, etc); c) Web Trends data; d) CMS; e) Foreign press center reports - journalists provide direct feedback on journalist tours; f) media placement and op-ed placement reports; g) INR/R polling Opinion Alerts; h) FBIS daily reports, which can be targeted specifically; i) Contact management software used to manage outreach; j) alumni web site and ECA alumni database; k) PAS Madrid Media Reaction Chart; l) Weekly highlights reports;

NO 0%

Are Federal managers and program partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, and other government partners) held accountable for cost, schedule and performance results?

Explanation: Federal managers and program partners are held accountable for cost, schedule, and performance results through the performance appraisal system. This system ties the performance appraisals of PD officers to the achievement of public diplomacy objectives. In particular, managers who are responsible for achieving key program results are clearly identified in the embassy setting. Performance standards are listed in the MPP documents. Contractors and grantees operate by Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and Anti-Deficiency Act requirements as well as the milestones of performance-based contracts. All bureaus have access to grants officers to ensure compliance with federal regulations. Grantees and contractors only receive renewals based upon successful performance. Project managers and contractors are required to take the Managing State Projects training at the Foreign Service Institute to ensure proper and consistent project management. For an Anti-Drug program in the Western Hemisphere region, funding was distributed through a grants process by a board of State officers. The subgrants that couldn't demonstrate performance were not awarded additional grants.

Evidence: a) EER example; b) Grants database; c) Cable on performance evaluations

YES 14%

Are funds (Federal and partners') obligated in a timely manner, spent for the intended purpose and accurately reported?

Explanation: Using a funding matrix that links planned funds to activities, public affairs officers and financial management officers work closely to ensure that 100 percent of PD funds are obligated within the fiscal year. Funds are distributed according to a spending plan on a quarterly basis to regional bureaus. The mid-year and 3rd quarter financial reviews provide an opportunity for managers to verify that unliquidated obligations are valid and that remaining balances are deobligated. Financial transactions are coded to both an organization and function or project. Managers also use monthly spending reports to review obligation levels and cumulative obligations. All requisitions must include verification that funds are available to managers.

Evidence: Spending report; regional bureau budget example; PD funding matrix

YES 14%

Does the program have procedures (e.g. competitive sourcing/cost comparisons, IT improvements, appropriate incentives) to measure and achieve efficiencies and cost effectiveness in program execution?

Explanation: Public diplomacy has one efficiency performance measure that reflects the average amount spent on programs as a percentage of total public diplomacy spending. The increasing targets reflect ongoing efforts by the staff to reduce administrative costs. Toward this end, public diplomacy projects have procedures to measure and achieve efficiencies and cost-effectiveness in program execution. Because the majority of PD funding covers the salaries abroad, an overseas staffing model analysis was conducted by HR/RMA to measure the staffing needs. Adjustments have been made based on the model results. PD is taking the lead for the Department in reviewing and securing standardized contact management software. PA has streamlined its competition for competitive sourcing for the office of broadcast services and for competing commercial activities. AF/PD realigned funding to be more effective. PD also conducts training of officers at regional centers, which saves travel funds. Working together with IIP, the PD family has developed the PD Knowledge Management system and the PD Global Forum that facilitates communication and best practices among PD practitioners. Additionally, the Fulbright Commissions co-locate with other organizations to share administrative costs such as rent and utilities and establishing "virtual presence through embassy websites (managed by PD), American Corners (where salary and space are provided by host organizations); and sharing speakers who come to a particular region.

Evidence: a) Overseas staffing model; b) CAJE description; c) RPO Vienna training curriculum; d) PDKM; e) PD Global Forum;

YES 14%

Does the program collaborate and coordinate effectively with related programs?

Explanation: There is no strong evidence that interagency or private collaboration has led to meaningful resource allocation decisions. While public diplomacy leadership has played a leadership role in several inter-agency coordination efforts, it may be too early to obtain clear evidence of meaningful actions regarding resources. Continued collaboration will likely resolve this issue before the next reassessment. The National Security Language Initiative is more directly attributable to another public diplomacy program (exchanges) due to its involvement in the development and ongoing management of the initiative.

Evidence: a) Tsunami Relief paper show brochure; b) Iraq election collaboration document;c) Examples of DOS - Peace Corps collaboration; d) Examples of DOS - DOD collaboration;

NO 0%

Does the program use strong financial management practices?

Explanation: The Federal Managers' Financial Integrity Act (FMFIA) requires agencies to establish management control and financial systems that provide reasonable assurance that the integrity of federal programs and operations are protected. It also requires that the head of the agency, based on an evaluation, provide an annual Statement of Assurance on whether the agency has met this requirement. The State Department evaluated its management control systems and financial management systems for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2005. This evaluation provided reasonable assurance that the objectives of the FMFIA were achieved in FY 2005, and formed the basis for the Secretary's Statement of Assurance. The annual performance and accountability report demonstrates no issues with public diplomacy. Internal controls are in place to minimize erroneous payments. Admin Officers obligate financial transactions, and the State Department processes the payments, thus ensuring checks and balances on PD accounts. No OIG reports show internal control weaknesses for PD activities. Cost comparisons are used when awarding grants or contracts. PD coordinates with FMOs on PD expenditures and the FMOs are in charge of actual expenditures. The Department uses the RFC 60 (a monthly burn rate report) and the quarterly exchange rate reports to review its financial standing.

Evidence: a) Performance and Accountability Report; b) RFC 60 report; c) quarterly exchange rate report

YES 14%

Has the program taken meaningful steps to address its management deficiencies?

Explanation: Public diplomacy programs have taken steps to address their identified management deficiencies. For example, in an inspection of Bonn, the Office of Inspector General recommended that the mission gather evidence of the impact of the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Program. The post and ECA launched a joint program evaluation to gather that evidence. Also multiple reports from external sources have cited management opportunities for improvement for public diplomacy. In response to a recommendation from the Djerjian Committee regarding the need for a stronger planning and evaluation capacity, the Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy established the Office of Policy, Planning and Resources. The purpose of this office is to coordinate management issues, including budget, planning and measurement for all of Public Diplomacy. Public Diplomacy has established a Rapid Response Unit to counter disinformation more quickly. Public Diplomacy has assigned specific Deputy Assistant Secretaries in each regional bureau to be responsible for public diplomacy activities to ensure better management and coordiantion throughout the Department.

Evidence: a) CBYX evaluation (American and German versions); b) Establishment of Office of Policy, Planning and Resources;

YES 14%
Section 3 - Program Management Score 71%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability
Number Question Answer Score

Has the program demonstrated adequate progress in achieving its long-term performance goals?

Explanation: Because two of the three long-term measures are new, baseline data and long term targets are still being developed. It will be difficult to demonstrate adequate progress to achieving long term performance goals until multi-year data is available.

Evidence: a) List of long term measures, b) Performance and Accountability Report, c) Bureau Performance Plans, d) Joint Performance Plan, e) RESULTS database examples, f) http://pewglobal.org/ ; http://www.freedomhouse.org/template.cfm?page=16&year=2005 ; http://www.freedomhouse.org/template.cfm?page=15&year=2005 .

NO 0%

Does the program (including program partners) achieve its annual performance goals?

Explanation: Because only five of the twelve annual measures currently have baselines and targets, the program can only clearly demonstrate that small extent of progress is being made toward annual performance goals. For each of the five measures, performance targets are being consistently achieved.

Evidence: a) List of annual measures and partial data, b) Performance and Accountability c) Report; d) Bureau Performance Plans;e) Mission Performance Plans;f) Joint Performance Plan;g) RESULTS database examples; h)http://www.freedomhouse.org/template.cfm?page=16&year=2005 .


Does the program demonstrate improved efficiencies or cost effectiveness in achieving program goals each year?

Explanation: Public diplomacy tracks the percent of program funds to administrative funds. This measure reflects the average amount of total Public Diplomacy funding that is allocated to program activities in all geographic regions. A higher percentage indicates that more funds are being spent on programs and fewer funds are being spent on other costs such as administrative costs, which is a more efficient use of resources. Program funds are used to fund activities to engage and educate local populations about U.S. values and policies. Data demonstrate improved efficiencies each fiscal year since 2003, when the baseline was established.

Evidence: a) Efficency measure, targets, data, b) Performance and Accountability Report; c) Bureau Performance Plan;d) Joint Performance Plan


Does the performance of this program compare favorably to other programs, including government, private, etc., with similar purpose and goals?

Explanation: The ability to measure the effectiveness of public diplomacy is recognized universally as a very difficult task. The United Kingdom recently conducted a review of its public diplomacy efforts (similar to a GAO study) and found similar challenges to those identified in the reviews of U.S. public diplomacy. Because of the strength of program design, the emerging performance framework, and the continued institutionalization of evaluation and management systems, the public diplomacy program compares favorably with other programs to a small extent. Based on long term outcome data, the US Government program still has significant room for improvement in comparison with other countries with public diplomacy programs. In a recently study by the Pew Global Attitudes Project, the United States received the a favorability rating of 39 percent in comparison wiith 60 percent of citizens having a favorable opinion of Germany, 60 percent Japan, 54 percent France, and 54 percent China.

Evidence: a) Pew Global Attitudes Project report, b) IAWG Reports and Country studies; c) U.K. Public Diplomacy Review; d) Norwegian Public Diplomacy Paper;l


Do independent evaluations of sufficient scope and quality indicate that the program is effective and achieving results?

Explanation: Evaluations of overseas missions conducted by the OIG demonstrate that public diplomacy is achieving results. Four independent public diplomacy evaluations are currently underway and will all be completed by September 2006. Initial results from three, the ACCESS Microscholarship Program, the American Corners program, and Digital Video Conferences between Arab and American youth, show that the programs are effective in reaching target audiences and meeting their goals. The fourth evaluation of Hi Magazine demonstrated the print version of the magazine was not as effective and the Under Secretary suspended publication. The evaluation is providing market analysis information for any future publication. Independent assessments such as the ACSI scores on public websites show DOS sites are effective. Newsmarket reports provided to PA demonstrate its activities are effective. Training activities funded through EUR/ACE have evaluations demonstrating the effectiveness. Surveys of exchange participants, data from web sites including customer satisfaction data, data from American corners visitors, etc. show that PD is reaching its goals.

Evidence: a) OIG inspection report and comments. b) Hi Magazine Rapid Assessment,c) ACCESS Microscholarships site visit reports, d) American Corners site visit reports;e) DVC evaluation report; f) Joint COM/PAO Survey Report.

YES 20%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability Score 47%

Last updated: 09062008.2006SPR