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In Session: Nation branding and public diplomacy: Re-Imagining the nation in Thailand, Hong Kong, South Korea
2: From Nation Branding to Political Marketing: Pracharat and the 2019 Thai Election
Wednesday, March 24, 2021
12:00pm – 1:30pm EDT
Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
This paper analyses the Thai junta’s nation branding efforts in the run-up to the 24 March 2019 general election. It focuses on the transformation of the junta’s pracharat policy that featured heavily in their post-coup nation-branding efforts into a political marketing tool for the newly established junta proxy party: Palang Pracharat. The paper argues that the junta’s use of pracharat as a political marketing tool helped to strengthen the electoral fortunes of Palang Pracharat and contributed to its eventual electoral victory. This shows that the distinction between nation branding and political marketing is not as clear-cut as many academic studies assume and that nation branding can also be deployed for the purpose of regime legitimation.