Our Approach

Global Ties Network members implement the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) and dozens of other educational, cultural, and professional public diplomacy programs, primarily in partnership with the U.S. Department of State. These programs bring current and future world leaders to the United States and promote greater citizen participation in diplomacy.

Our Community-Based Member organizations are local hubs for global engagement. With deep roots in their communities, they create inclusive programs for global leaders that showcase the rich diversity of the United States.  They engage thousands of volunteers each year and bring tangible economic and social benefits to their own communities in the process.

Global Ties U.S. supports our member organizations with funding, programs, and services to strengthen their work and to build a strong community across the Global Ties Network. We help ensure our members are:

  • Dynamic local centers for global engagement, working with a range of community partners to strengthen international connections in cities and towns across the country.
  • Valuable hubs for community inclusion, drawing people together in ways that make local communities stronger and more connected.
  • Effective partners of the U.S. Department of State in providing an excellent experience for international exchange and public diplomacy program participants from around the world.

Our Member Services Include Providing:

  • Financial resources and grant administration, which help member organizations invest in their economies. More than 90% of U.S. Department of State Educational and Cultural Exchange funding is spent in the United States. In 2022, our members showed an 8:1 return locally on this federal investment.
  • New programs and partnership opportunities, which help member organizations strengthen their international exchange activities and connections to foundations, corporations, and private philanthropy, and keep their cities globally connected while deepening local impact. (See programs HERE.)
  • Signature events such as the National Meeting and regional summits, which bring together the Global Ties Network and leaders from the business, government, civil society, and nonprofit fields to build community, spark new ideas for international exchange and citizen diplomacy programming, and support organizational growth. (See events HERE)
  • Professional development and training, which increase the impact of global exchange for U.S. communities and for our international alliances. This includes efforts to incorporate greater diversity and inclusion in international exchange and to promote broader community representation. (Member Portal Access HERE)
  • Communications and marketing, which support the Global Ties Network in building community, conversation, and awareness around the impact of international exchange programs. This includes strategic guidance and trainings, and story sharing.
  • Educating and empowering our members to engage with their elected officials, which elevate the important role of international exchange programs locally, nationally, and globally, and supports the Global Ties Network in showcasing their impact. See our Network’s most recent impact reports HERE.

For U.S. public diplomacy programs to have the most impact, we must be collaborative. We work with partners, including alumni organizations abroad and national organizations that focus on international affairs, public diplomacy, and international exchange to advance our goal of building community globally by working locally.

Our Priorities

The Global Ties U.S. Strategic Framework (2023-26) highlights four key priorities:  

  • Membership & Programs: Lead high-quality citizen diplomacy and international exchange activities and support a resilient network of member organizations to advance and deepen U.S. citizen engagement with the world.
  • Communication & Partnerships: Develop and elevate a compelling narrative about the relevance and impact of international exchange and citizen engagement as strategic assets of diplomacy.
  • Operational Sustainability: Establish an agile, efficient, and equitable internal operation that enables Global Ties U.S. to boost employee retention and satisfaction, improve program implementation, and build organizational stability to support our member organizations.
  • Financial Sustainability: Maintain and grow revenue streams to ensure an appropriate mix of funding to solidify Global Ties U.S.’ ability to meet our mission, and to support Global Ties U.S. members in meeting theirs.