Meridian Exchange: November 2021

For more than 60 years, Meridian has used its unmatched convening power in diplomacy, leadership and culture to strengthen international collaboration on shared global priorities. We ask, if you are able, to make a tax-deductible gift to support our efforts to advance diplomatic solutions. Your gift can be transformative in equipping the leaders of tomorrow with skills that advance human rights, free press, solutions to climate change and fostering economic prosperity for underserved global communities.

The Return of Next Level

After almost two years of virtual programming, the Meridian Center for Cultural Diplomacy's Next Level project partnered with the United Arab Emirates to perform for audiences and collaborate with local artists to promote cross-cultural creative exchange and conflict transformation. The team partnered with Berklee College of Music Abu Dhabi to host Next Level Academy and the U.S. artists participated in a performance at Expo 2020 in Dubai. Team UAE is part of a larger Next Level cohort of American MCs, DJs, beatmakers and Hip-Hop dancers seeking to create a global community through Hip-Hop culture.

Hybrid programming is here to stay

As we continue to adapt to a new age of programming, we have innovated how we connect leaders across the globe by blending the best of live and virtual. This past month, we hosted two hybrid events with the Meridian Center of Diplomatic Engagement:

  • "Understanding Washington: U.S. Foreign Assistance" with Dr. Dafna Hochmand Randa, Director of the Office of Foreign Assistance at the U.S. State Department and Carl B. Kress, Regional Director for the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, Eurasia, and East Asia at the U.S. Trade Development Agency
  • “Sprinting Towards Vaccine Equity” with Dr. Scott Gottlieb, Former Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (2017-2019) and Senior Fellow, American Enterprise Institute (AEI)

Journalism exchange fosters global collaboration

Earlier this month, members of the Meridian Global Journalism Initiative participated in “Covering the Economic Power Dynamic shifts between Europe and China” with Ryan Heath of PoliticoSteven Erlanger of The New York Times and Dan Negrea of American Geostrategy. American journalists alongside participants from the Central and Eastern Europe Journalist (CEEJ) Fellowship Program had interactive discussions on how to expand the capacity of professional journalists while improving the sustainability of citizen-generated media in the Central and Eastern Europe region. Additionally, the ​​​​​Central Asia Media Exchange Program composed of journalists representing Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan participated in a three-week virtual program on effective uses of social media in journalism. Participants met with various media and press organizations and people including Meridian's Rising Leaders Council Co-Chair Ben Chang.

Upcoming Events

Rising Leaders Council Holiday Cocktail Reception

Monday, December 6, 2021
Celebrate the holidays with the Rising Leaders Council and friends! For more information, please reach out to Sophia Skaff.


Insights@Meridian with Jon Finer, Principal Deputy National Security Advisor

Tuesday, December 7, 2021
Meridian is bringing together chiefs of mission for an Insights@Meridian program featuring Jonathan J. Finer, Principal Deputy National Security Advisor, to speak on the Biden administration's national security priorities. Mr. Finer will discuss how U.S. domestic policy and investments tie into international policy and the importance of revitalizing alliances and partnerships around the world to confront shared global threats, particularly climate change, and address the upcoming Summit for Democracy. For more information, please email mcde@meridian.orgThis program is invitation-only and has limited space. It is closed to press and off the record.

Global Business Briefing with Congressman Darin LaHood and MEP Reinhard Bütikofer

Wednesday, December 8, 2021
The Meridian Corporate Council is hosting a virtual discussion with Congressman Darin LaHood (R-IL) and MEP Reinhard Bütikofer on the future of U.S-EU economic and security cooperation with China. For more information, please email sgreenwald@meridian.orgThis program is invitation-only and has limited space. It is closed to press and off the record.

Insights@Meridian with Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA)

Monday, December 13, 2021
This program, arranged specifically for Chiefs of Mission, will feature U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley for an off-the-record conversation on the role of the U.S. Senate in foreign affairs. For more information, please email mcde@meridian.orgThis program is invitation-only and has limited space. It is closed to press and off the record.

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