France: the world’s number one ‘soft power’

France has overtaken the United States as the most influential country in the world, according to the “Soft Power 30”, an annual survey examining how much influence and diplomatic power a country yields in international relations.

Compiled by British PR firm Portland Communications in conjunction with the University of Southern California Center on Public Diplomacy, the report is based on a number of criteria of influence, including culture, education, sport and digital engagement, as well as international perceptions of a country, its diplomatic network, and attractiveness for both tourists and foreign students.

Now ranked ahead of the United Kingdom (2nd) and the United States (3rd), France’s global leadership is underpinned by longstanding strengths, including harnessing one of the world’s foremost diplomatic networks, and its position as the world’s leading destination country for foreign tourists.

Above all, the report confirms France’s openness to the world and its international economic reach; France is ranked first in the global engagement sub-index, and belongs to more multi-lateral organizations than any other country. The report also notes that some of the mainstays of France’s rich cultural offering – a flourishing film sector, and renowned cuisine, restaurants, museums and galleries – continue to receive global acclaim. France’s progress in the digital sub-index is another area highlighted, reflecting the efforts made and ongoing ambitions that France has in this field, as well as the international success enjoyed to date by French startups.

To find out more about France’s key advantages as a business location, click here to explore Business France’s series of kits showcasing the French economy.

Click here to download the “Soft Power 30” report.

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