Foreign correspondents have played a crucial role in world events ranging from the Vietnam War to the fall of the Berlin Wall, but their role continues to evolve as news organizations adapt their business models to the technological developments of the twenty-first century. Jack Hamilton, longtime journalist, scholar, and public servant, discussed the changing role of foreign correspondents in the era of social media, widespread newspaper bankruptcy, and public diplomacy.
Dr. John Maxwell Hamilton, a long-time journalist, author, and public servant, is the Hopkins P. Breazeale Professor in Louisiana State University’s Manship School of Mass Communication and a senior scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC. As a journalist, Hamilton reported for the Milwaukee Journal, the Christian Science Monitor, and ABC radio. He was a longtime commentator for MarketPlace, broadcast nationally by Public Radio International. In government, Hamilton oversaw nuclear non-proliferation issues for the House Foreign Affairs Committee, served in the State Department during the Carter administration as an advisor to the head of the US foreign aid program in Asia, and managed a World Bank program to educate Americans about economic development. Hamilton’s most recent book is Journalism’s Roving Eye: A History of American Newsgathering Abroad (2009).