France has long been engaged in a very active cultural and scientific diplomacy. It aims both at ensuring and valorising the international presence of France in the domains of language, culture, communication, or higher education and research. This diplomacy is backed by a network of cooperation services in embassies and cultural institutions, as well as by numerous operators and specialised agencies in various sectors. This book asks whether cultural diplomacy, invented by France in the 18th century, is in danger. It asks whether the present system, aimed at helping artists and creators, professionals of teaching and culture, researchers and intellectuals, can be improved. And it argues that a diplomacy of influence needs coherent foreign policy connecting sectors and promoting partnerships.
Philippe Lane is Professor of French Linguistics at Rouen University in France and currently seconded to the French Foreign Ministry. He is presently serving as Cultural Counsellor to the French Embassy in Jordan. He was a visiting Fellow in the Department of French Studies in Cambridge University from 2008-12. In 2011 he co-edited (with Maurice Fraser) "Franco-British Academic Partnerships - The Next Chapter", and (with Michael Worton) "French Studies in and for the 21st Century)", published by Liverpool University Press.