As she said goodbye to Canada after 3½ years, Norwegian Ambassador Mona Brøther said she’s pleased to have deepened the reputation and knowledge about Norway in Canada.
“This is the core of public diplomacy,” said the veteran ambassador, who will now retire after 40 years in the foreign service. “We are good neighbours — even with the ocean between us.”
She said the Arctic was the umbrella of her efforts as it’s Norway’s No. 1 foreign policy priority.
“We are in the forefront of the Arctic theatre,” she said, and added that 80 per cent of Arctic shipping goes through Norwegian waters. “Climate change manifests itself in a very dramatic way up north.”
She said she participated in several conferences and panels at universities. Most recently, she was invited by Memorial University to Fogo Island as one of 30 “Arctic thinkers” who spent two days debating the issues facing the north.
“There is also an interest in the Nordic model in Canada,” she said. “The Nordic countries are on the top of all statistics. The model is based on a society characterized by equality. It is a balance between a strong state and a robust private sector that has sufficient liberty to prosper and create workplaces.”
She’s also spoken often of Norway’s Oil Fund, into which Norwegian petroleum surpluses are deposited. “It is the pride of Norway and it helps us be a player in the International financial market,” she said of the nearly $1-trillion fund.
She said it’s been a rewarding mission because Canadians are interested in Norway and she’s been able to report back to Oslo on the ways Canada addresses its issues.
She said top on her successor’s agenda will be working with Canada on how oil-producing countries address climate change. ...
A Princeton PhD, was a US diplomat for over 20 years, mostly in Eastern Europe, and was promoted to the Senior Foreign Service in 1997. For the Open World Leadership Center, he speaks with
its delegates from Europe/Eurasia on the topic, "E Pluribus Unum? What Keeps the United States United." Affiliated with Georgetown University for over ten years, he shares ideas with students about public diplomacy.
The papers of his deceased father -- poet and diplomat John L. Brown -- are stored at Georgetown University Special Collections at the Lauinger Library. They are manuscript materials valuable to scholars interested in post-WWII U.S.-European cultural relations.
This blog is dedicated to him, Dr. John L. Brown, a remarkable linguist/humanist who wrote in the Foreign Service Journal (1964) -- years before "soft power" was ever coined -- that "The CAO [Cultural Affairs Officer] soon comes to realize that his job is really a form of love-making and that making love is never really successful unless both partners are participating."