Global Insights Mission to Portugal

A delegation of thirty-six Meridian members traveled to Portugal from Monday, June 5th – Saturday, June 10th to engage in diplomatic and cultural exchange with Europe’s oldest country. Delegates began their journey in Lisbon, where they participated in the 60th Anniversary of the U.S. Department of State’s Art in Embassies (AIE) program through its commemorative exhibition, the “Democracy Collection.” AIE aims to strengthen democracy through art diplomacy by spearheading artist exchanges, traveling exhibitions, civic engagements, events at cultural institutions, and its very own diplomatic art repository that will remain at the service of U.S. diplomats for generations to come. 

The Meridian delegation is incredibly grateful to the U.S. Ambassador to Portugal, Randi Charno Levine, and the Director of Art in Embassies, Megan Beyer, for inviting us to participate in these extremely meaningful and impactful few days of programming! As Director Beyer said, “Art can make you feel what a diplomat can only try to make you understand.” 

After a fabulous start in Lisbon, delegates traveled north to the cities of Coimbra, Porto, and Braga, where they discovered the history of Portugal’s oldest university and heard a performance from the students at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music. The week culminated in a visit to the Douro Valley, where our delegates learned of the vast natural history of Portugal. Our delegates came back to America energized by the prospect of what we can all achieve together through cultural exchange, diplomacy, and the desire to solve shared global challenges. 

The Meridian Global Insights Mission provides delegation members a unique opportunity to participate in Meridian’s mission of strengthening diplomacy and U.S. engagement with the world through the exchange of people, ideas and culture. Please stay tuned for an announcement in the coming months of the location of our next Global Insights Mission! 

Project summary

Global Insights Mission to Portugal
Number of Visitors: 36
Regions: Europe and Eurasia
Countries: Portugal
Impact Areas: Cultural Diplomacy, Foreign Policy, Education
Program Areas: Culture, Diplomatic Engagement
Partners: Diplomatic Corps, Individuals/Donors