"'Soft Power and Its Influence on Global Issues' - Colombo Defence Seminar - 2016," defence.lk
image from articleExcerpt:
Sri Lanka Army's 6th international defence conference, 'Colombo Defence Seminar - 2016' began at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) today morning (1st Thursday, September 2016). Minister of Regional Development Hon. Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka graced the occasion as the Chief Guest.
State Minister of Defence Hon. Ruwan Wijewardene and Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Eng. Karunasena Hettiarachchi also attended the event.
The two day (1-2 September) international conclave is attended by many distinguished scholars and participants from 70 nations. This year's theme will be 'Soft Power and Its Influence on Global Issues'.
Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Eng. Karunasena Hettiarachchi delivered the key note speech while the Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Crishanthe De Silva delivered the introductory speech.
Delivering the keynote address Secretary Hettiarachchi highlighted the importance of the 6th Colombo Defense Seminar which centers on the importance of soft power in its influence in global issues, highlighting the importance of persuasive diplomacy in the dawn of an information age dominated by increasing flows of information and ideas.
This seminar is held at a moment when the first-ever National Security think-tank was established under the vision of our President Maithripala Sirisena and our National Security Council. As Chair of Institute of National Security Studies I invite the scholars to work closely with the new think tank. Seven years after the end of war on terrorism, our leadership has realized how important it is to share the knowledge gained over the decades with the international community, he said.
Secretary also said that in his view, soft power is important in preventing the emergence and spread of transnational security issues of a grave nature such as terrorism and separatism. He also noted the concept of "smart power", which is a mix of both soft and hard power strategies, which can be used to fight against hard security issue such as terrorism.
At its core, soft power rests on the ability to shape the preferences of others through intangible national assets such as an attractive personality, culture, political values and institutions and policies that are seen as legitimate or having moral authority. This was a strategy utilized by our Western and Eastern friends, secretary also noted.
During the key note speech, Secretary also enlightened the gathering on Soft Power Sri Lanka, Public Diplomacy, Economic Diplomacy and Military Soft Power. ...