The Institutionalising of Soft Power by the UAE Government

  • Hind Al Shamsi

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    The UAE has emerged as the land of trade, tourism, and business in the modern world once the government diverted their oil profits to create a more sustainable way to move the country forward. In 2017, UAE officials have recognized the importance of soft power, and have set up a council that will work toward improving the soft power status while increasing the positive public opinion of the country, as well as attracting international investments and support. The present research studies the institutionalisation of soft power in the UAE. The study focuses on finding the main reasons motivating the UAE Government to increase its emphasis on soft power in its foreign policy and the reason for the establishment of a formalized high-level council to coordinate soft power, and the similarities and differences between approaches to soft power countries. The study analysed the soft power strategies of Germany, Russia, Japan, and the UAE on factors such as culture, political aspects, education, security, and economic aspects. The study stated Germany to be the biggest and most successful soft power amongst the countries studied. The study analysed the policies of soft power of the UAE and presented the discussion for creation of the soft power council by the country. The UAE is continuing its efforts in establishing itself a major contributor of soft power across the world, the study has found that the UAE has definitely made significant gains by establishing the only council, in the world, formulated to establishing soft power. This council will ensure that institutionalisation of soft power happens for the UAE, which serves as it purpose for creation. The study recommended the UAE to adapt such security strategies that would help present itself to be a nation interested in establishing positive world relations in an effort to form alliances and to use strategies in a way that depicts it to be an emerging soft power instead of getting into military alliances with the US, as well as to establish an educational front; thereby, extending such services to the neighbouring countries so that its positive side can be presented as contributing to the educational growth of the region. For the future research, the study recommended to conduct a study on how the adapted strategies are finally impacting the nations and the resultant effect of the concept of soft power on rest of the world.
    Date of AwardDec 2017
    Original languageAmerican English
    SupervisorAthol Yates (Supervisor)


    • UAE
    • Soft power
    • hard power foreign policies
    • Institutionalisation.

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