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America’s Soft Power – What’s Next?

09 September 2020, 15:00–16:00 UK Time

Brand Finance was joined by the father of soft power, Professor Joseph Nye, to explore and discuss the future of the United States. Coining the term in late 1980s, Professor Nye has been the pioneer in recognising the importance of the role of soft power in international relations and foreign policy. As the former assistant secretary of defence and former dean of Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, Professor Nye’s work has profoundly shaped both the conduct and study of international relations. His latest book ‘Do Morals Matter? Presidents and Foreign Policy from FDR to Trump’ analyses the role of ethics in US foreign policy during the American era after 1945.

With the world in pandemic turmoil and the 2020 Presidential Election imminent, the role of soft power is arguably more relevant and important than ever. This webinar explored the potential impact of election results on America’s soft power, the role of a leader in enhancing and reinforcing a nation’s soft power, and took a broader view looking at the future of America’s soft power in the decades to come.

Following Brand Finance launching the Global Soft Power Index 2020  – the world’s most comprehensive research study on perceptions of soft power, surveying the opinions of over 55,000 people in more than 100 countries – the webinar explored predictions for the 2021 Index, and in particular whether the US will be able to hold on to the coveted number one position.

The hour-long webinar began with a presentation from Professor Nye, and concluded with a Q&A session moderated by David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance.

The Global Soft Power Index 2020 and 2021 reports and the findings of the study are free to access online. Our interactive dashboard allows you to explore the full results from the survey in maps and charts, rank nations by metrics and statements, and choose data sets to create your own graphs.

The full webinar recording is available to view online here:

To learn more about your nation’s soft power results, discuss how your brand can leverage geographic branding, get involved in the next wave of fieldwork ahead of the publication of the next Global Soft Power Index, or enquire about using the data for academic research, please email

09 September 2020, 15:00–16:00 UK Time
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David Haigh
Chairman and CEO
Brand Finance

David is the Chairman and CEO of Brand Finance Plc – the world’s leading brand valuation consultancy. He has worked in the area of branded business, brand, and intangible asset valuation since 1991. He specialised entirely in the field after becoming the Director of Brand Valuation for Interbrand in 1995. He subsequently left Interbrand in 1996 to launch Brand Finance which is celebrating 25 years in business this year.

David represented the British Standards Institution in the working parties responsible for crafting international industry standards: ISO 10668 on Brand Valuation in 2010 and ISO 20671 on Brand Evaluation in 2019.

David is a passionate writer and has authored many articles on brand valuation, published in numerous marketing and finance newspapers and magazines, such as: Financial Times, Accountancy Age, and Marketing Week. He has also lectured on the topic of brand valuation for Harvard, Chicago, and London Business Schools.

David graduated from Bristol University with an English degree, qualified as a Chartered Accountant with Price Waterhouse in London, and obtained a postgraduate diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). He is a Fellow of The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and has a practising certificate with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).

Professor Joseph Nye
University Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus; Former Dean of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government

Joseph S. Nye, Jr. is University Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus and former Dean of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. He received his bachelor's degree summa cum laude from Princeton University, won a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford, and earned a Ph.D. in political science from Harvard.

He has served as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, Chair of the National Intelligence Council, and a Deputy Under Secretary of State, and won distinguished service awards from all three agencies. His books include The Future of Power,  The Power Game: A Washington Novel, andDo Morals Matter?

He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the British Academy, and the American Academy of Diplomacy. In a recent survey of international relations scholars, he was ranked as the most influential scholar on American foreign policy, and in 2011, Foreign Policy named him one of the top 100 Global Thinkers. In 2014, Japan awarded him the Order of the Rising Sun.


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