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Post-9/11 U.S. Public Diplomacy in Eastern Europe: Dialogue via New Technologies or Face-to-Face Communication?
Has the fabric of communication between the United States and the countries once behind the Iron Curtain changed from simply delivering messages through international broadcasters to collaborative relationships built on dialogue? This work seeks to discern whether diplomats have embraced and applied dialogic principles with foreign publics by examining how U.S. diplomats engage with foreign publics and what tools they use to engage in dialogue. Interviews with U.S. diplomats in Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia show that U.S. diplomats embraced and applied dialogic principles, and employed dialogue to establish long-term collaborative relations with people abroad. Communicating with foreign publics in transitional societies required a multifaceted approach that required a variety of communication tools, among which the prevailing preference was for face-to-face communication.