DFAT ‘struggling’ with digital diplomacy, former ambassador to Israel Dave Sharma says
Australia’s former ambassador to Israel has warned his old department that it risks irrelevance unless it overhauls its digital diplomacy and reporting.
- DFAT has ramped up its online presence and runs 249 active social media accounts
- But Dave Sharma suggests much of the material is formulaic and anaemic
- Australia’s former ambassador to Israel argues DFAT is falling behind on digital diplomacy
Dave Sharma — who is now the Liberal candidate for the Sydney seat of Wentworth — says the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has been treating online diplomacy as an “optional add-on” rather than a core channel of influence.
The department has ramped up its online presence in recent years and now runs 249 active social media accounts on such platforms as Facebook and Twitter.
But in a paper for the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, Mr Sharma suggests much of the material DFAT posts is formulaic and anaemic.
“Good digital content is pithy, impactful and tailored, but too little of DFAT’s digital content meets that test.”
The paper says DFAT could use social media to shape public opinion as well as “rebut falsehoods, contest narratives, correct mistakes”.
DFAT’s online presence ‘stiff and aloof’
Read original article here