The Bureau of Public Affairs
is the part of the United States Department of State
The United States Department of State , is the United States federal executive department responsible for international relations of the United States, equivalent to the foreign ministries of other countries...
that carries out the Secretary of State's mandate to help Americans
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...
understand the importance of foreign affairs
Foreign Affairs is an American magazine and website on international relations and U.S. foreign policy published since 1922 by the Council on Foreign Relations six times annually...
. The Bureau is led by the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs
The Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs is the head of the Bureau of Public Affairs within the United States Department of State. Typically, the Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs is also the official spokesperson of the State Department...
who also serves as Department spokesman.
The PA Bureau pursues the State Department's mission to inform the American people and to feed their concerns and comments back to the policymakers. It accomplishes this in a variety of ways, which include:
- Strategic and tactical planning to advance the Administration's priority foreign policy goals;
- Conducting press briefings for domestic and foreign press corps;
- Pursuing media outreach, enabling Americans everywhere to hear directly from key Department officials through local, regional and national media interviews;
- Managing the State Department's websites at www.state.gov and www.future.state.gov and developing web pages with up-to-date information about U.S. foreign policy
A country's foreign policy, also called the foreign relations policy, consists of self-interest strategies chosen by the state to safeguard its national interests and to achieve its goals within international relations milieu. The approaches are strategically employed to interact with other countries...
- Answering questions from the public about current foreign policy issues by phone, email, or letter;
- Arranging town meetings and scheduling speakers to visit communities to discuss U.S. foreign policy and why it is important to all Americans;
- Producing and coordinating audio-visual products and services in the U.S. and abroad for the public, the press, the Secretary of State, and Department bureaus and offices;
- Preparing historical studies on U.S. diplomacy and foreign affairs matters.
Office of Regional Media Outreach
The Office of Regional Media Outreach (RMO) provides local, regional, specialty, and national media a central connection point to department newsmakers.
Their database of newsmakers enables members of the media to quickly find an expert at the department to provide insight, analysis, and expertise on foreign affairs, news and events. Searches can be made by name, issue, position or language spoken. Once an expert has been identified, their staff will set up an interview for television, radio, or print media.
They list their 47 available experts
Issues and press
This tab of the State Department's website http://www.state.gov/issuesandpress/
gives the official U.S. position on the major issues in the news. As it is the official publication of opinion from the U.S. State Department, it offers its own view of an issue, and any reports that support it. It is a great start for preliminary research.
On this same tab you can find daily press briefings from the major outlets of official statement. You will find a record of "Remarks, Testimony: Senior Officials" http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/speeches/
Also included are "Daily Briefings" http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb
which are available for viewing in either Text of Video.
Also available is a statement from Secretary Rice http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/
and information about joining the listserv to receive 2-5 briefings a dayhttp://www.state.gov/misc/echannels/66822.htm
You will also find RSS Feeds, and press releases from the Foreign Press Centerhttp://fpc.state.gov/c17993.htm
, and the U.S. Mission to the United Nations (USUN)http://www.un.int/usa/
They have a section dedicated to Audio and Video Content, including Podcastshttp://www.state.gov/misc/echannels/66781.htm
Another great resource is the “Major State Department Publications”http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/rls/dos/221.htm
giving information on past bribery charges and a “Guide to Doing Business”http://www.state.gov/m/a/sdbu/pubs/c13313.htm
in the U.S.
Travel and Business
This tab offers important information and tips for Traveling and Businesshttp://www.state.gov/travelandbusiness/
For travel, they offer helpful information on properly documenting your identity on trips. Also included is information on Visas, and the developing technology of “e-passports”http://travel.state.gov/passport/eppt/eppt_2498.html
For business, they offer many important studies on major foreign markets and subsequent regulationshttp://www.state.gov/e/eeb/cba/
. They also provide a tool for “International Market Research”http://www.buyusainfo.net/adsearch.cfm?search_type=int&loadnav=no