Cynthia P. Schneider Cultural Diplomacy Expert; Fmr. U.S. Ambassador to Netherlands

Cynthia P. Schneider teaches, publishes, and organizes initiatives in the field of cultural diplomacy, with a focus on relations with the Muslim world. For the Brookings Institution she leads the Arts and Culture Initiative within the Saban Center for Middle East Policy. The Initiative seeks to maximize the potential of arts and culture to increase understanding between the United States and the Muslim world. Its activities include research, convening meetings in the U.S. and different regions of the Muslim world, and catalyzing projects, such as the Muslims on Screen and Television (MOST) Initiative which provides valuable resources and accurate information on Islam and Muslims for the U.S. entertainment community. The Brookings Institution will publish Dr. Schneider’s white paper Mightier than the Sword: Arts and Culture in the U.S.-Islamic World Relationship in October 2008. Prof. Schneider teaches courses in Diplomacy and Culture at Georgetown University, where, from 1984-2005, she was a member of the art history faculty, and published on Rembrandt and seventeenth century Dutch art. From 1998-2001 she served as U.S. Ambassador to the Netherlands. During the 1980s Dr. Schneider curated exhibitions at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and the National Gallery in Washington. She serves on the Boards of Directors of Wesley Theological Seminary and the Institute of Cultural Diplomacy. Schneider received her B.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard University.

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