Nation Branding in the Context of State Administration Agenda

Nation Branding in the Context of State Administration Agenda

Markéta Dianová (University of Economics, Prague, Czech Republic)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0214-3.ch003

Abstract

The chapter focuses on relationships, structures, and processes that fundamentally influence the implementation of the nation branding strategy, the scope of activities carried out by institutional actors, and the extent of involvement of these actors in the process of nation branding. It studies the activities the official actors carry out in the nation branding scope and identifies what their priorities are in the integrated state presentation. It identifies the sources of double-track activities processes in the distribution of the roles and extent of involvement of public diplomacy actors, as well as institutions responsible for presentation of a country. Without attempting to initiate changes in legislation or hierarchy of the state actors involved in nation branding, it brings insight into informal layer of formal relationships and interactions and brings a proposal on how to formally simplify the process of implementation of the nation branding strategy in the Czech Republic.
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1 Role Of The Nation Branding

Nation branding is a discipline cutting through traditional boundaries of established academic disciplines, ranging from sociology, politology, psychology and history, across the research on national identity and country of origin effect, to marketing, brand management, destination management to image management. It is desirable to demarcate the thematic area that serves as a basis for the study presented in this chapter, as nation branding doesn´t have a unified and generally accepted definition. Some authors (Kotler, 2002) perceive it as almost a synonym for a country of origin effect or place marketing, whereas Anholt (2005) defines nation branding as a term covering the whole nation brand strategy based on the strategic vision of a country, permanently supported and enriched by the communication between the country and the rest of the world.

Although nation branding has a relatively limited theoretical and academic basis, it is at the same time endowed with a significant amount of real-time activities that can directly influence it. It is also a relatively politicized agenda, often tackled by contradictory or even conflicting opinions and attitudes of government representatives and stakeholders. States, governments, economic and cultural actors, as well as the individual citizens are intervening into the process of nation branding, to greater or lesser extent, more or less intentionally. Nation branding itself (through the government perspective) targets mainly three key priorities: to attract the tourism, to stimulate the investment, and to support the export activities. Dinnie (2008) adds to the previous three also to attract the talent. The support of currency stability, restoration of credibility for investors, reversing of the decrease in international rating, increase of political influence, or strengthening of international partnerships are cited among other beneficial outcomes of effective nation branding (Dinnie, 2008). The awareness of the importance of how the countries want to be perceived by investors, political counterparts, tourists or foreign residents has become a part of the public discourse of the state actors both formally and informally (Szondi, 2008; Jönsson et al., 2000; Olins, 2002; Gudjonsson, 2005; Anholt, 2005, 2007, 2011, 2014; Scott, 2013). While tourism may be the most visible manifestation of the country as a brand (Dinnie, 2008), it is evident that the image, reputation and values that the country and its (formal and informal) representatives project to the outside world have an impact on the perception of its products, residents or investment opportunities (Anholt, 2009). Nation branding does not work with anything lesser than a country, and actors who may interact during the process, reach far beyond the outreach of government and public administration. On the other hand, in the environment of the government and the state administration as a relatively clearly defined space, agenda, actors and activities it is possible to suggest how to better formalize cooperation of actors not only among themselves but also in relations to the external environment.

Nation branding is a complex of activities carried out both by formal and informal actors whose extent of involvement was pursued in preceding studies (Szondi, 2008; Jönsson et al., 2000; Olins, 2002; Anholt, 2005, 2007, 2011, 2014; Scott, 2013). The aim of the chapter is to analyze and summarize how the nation branding activities are carried out and perceived through the perspective of official representatives of the government and state institutions in the Czech Republic.

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