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Sun 29 Aug 2021

6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Soft Power Diplomacy

Namaste 2021: Global Utsava of Indian Soft Power

Soft Power Diplomacy

August 29, 2021, Sunday | 06:00 – 07:30 PM IST

Moderator: Dr. Rupa Vasudevan, Chancellor, B.E.S.T Innovation University


  • Mr. Ilan Manor, Digital Diplomacy expert & Author
  • Mr Nicholas Cull, Professor of Public Diplomacy, Founding Director, Masters Program in Public Diplomacy, USC
  • Dr. Ramkumar Kutty, Founder, Vaidyagrama
  • Shri Shriram Vijayakumar, Chief Executive Officer, IHH Healthcare India
  • Ms. Wendy Werneth, Founder, The Nomadic Vegan
  • Prof. Daya Thussu, Professor, International Communication and Co-Director, India Media Centre

Dr. Rupa Vasudevan

Chancellor, B.E.S.T Innovation University

Dr. Rupa Vasudevan is the Chancellor, B.E.S.T Innovation University. She is appointed by GOK as one of the top ten academician Executive members of the General council of Karnataka State Higher Education Council, apex body on education in the state and was also involved in planning and implementation of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) initiatives in association with the Government of Karnataka. She is actively involved in skilling and Agricultural development activities and trying meaningful ways in which we can make a difference to our farmers while documenting best practices / traditional agricultural knowledge systems by farmers from rural areas of South India.


Mr Ilan Manor

Digital Diplomacy expert & Author

Dr. Ilan Manor's main area of research is the digitalization of public diplomacy. Manor's most recent book, The Digitalization of Public Diplomacy, was published in 2019 by Palgrave Macmillan.


Mr Nicholas Cull

Professor of Public Diplomacy, Founding Director, Masters Program in Public Diplomacy, USC

Professor Nicholas Cull is the the founding director of the master's program in public diplomacy and part of the team recognized by the Department of State with the Benjamin Franklin award at the University of Southern California. From 2004 to 2019, Cull served as president of the International Association for Media and History. He has provided advice and training in public diplomacy to a number of foreign ministries and cultural agencies around the world including those of the U.S., U.K., Canada, Mexico, Switzerland and the Netherlands. His many books include Public Diplomacy: Foundations for Global Engagement in the Digital Age (Polity, 2019).


Dr. Ramkumar Kutty

Founder, Founder, Vaidyagrama

Dr. Ramkumar, an alumnus of the Ayurveda College Coimbatore is the grandson of Arya Vaidyan PV Rama Variar, the founder of the AVP group of institutions in Coimbatore. He is currently the Director and Trustee on the Board of different institutions under the AVP umbrella. He is the Founder, Director of Vaidyagrama, which attempts to cater to the demand of authentic Ayurveda, the traditional way - as well as go natural the contemporary mode.


Shri Shriram Vijayakumar

Chief Executive Officer, IHH Healthcare India

Shriram Vijayakumar is the CEO of IHH Healthcare India, where he oversees the operations of reputable healthcare brands – Gleneagles Global hospitals, Global Hospital, and Continental Hospitals, united under a shared vision of becoming the world's most trusted healthcare services network He is an accomplished business leader and entrepreneur with extensive experience in the hospital and health care industries in multiple countries Founder & Managing Director - Nephrolife India Pvt. Ltd Former Asia Pacific COO for DaVita. He is a double major degree holder in Bachelor of Science, Economics and Information Systems from the Carnegie Mellon University


Prof Daya Thussu

Professor, International Communication & Co-Director, India Media Centre

Daya Thussu is Professor of International Communication at the Hong Kong Baptist University. He was Distinguished Visiting Professor and Inaugural Disney Chair in Global Media, 2018-19, at Schwarzman College, Tsinghua University in Beijing. For many years Professor Thussu was Professor of International Communication and Co-Director of India Media Centre as well as research advisor to the China Media Centre at the University of Westminster in London. Professor Thussu is the Founder and Managing Editor of the Sage journal Global Media and Communication and author or editor of 20 books, including Communicating India’s Soft Power: Buddha to Bollywood – the first book-length study of India’s soft power, published by Palgrave- Macmillan in New York, in 2013.


Ms. Wendy Werneth

Founder, The Nomadic Vegan

Ms Wendy Werneth, author of "Veggie Planet" is a nomadic traveler, vegan foodie and an animal lover. She has traveled over 117 countries uncovering vegan treasures to show how you can be a vegan anywhere and spread compassion everywhere. She is the founder of award-winning vegan travel blog, "The Nomadic vegan" (thenomadicvegan.com)