Our Impact

We foster connections that serve as powerful tools to reinforce American security and build a more civil, peaceful and prosperous world.

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In 1954, Citizen Diplomacy International hosted its first international exchange programs inspired by this idea—empowering individuals to connect one-on-one with peers worldwide will transform Philadelphia into a global hub of business, education and culture.

CDI members

Relationships Matter

Over the past six decades, thousands of passionate Citizen Diplomats have answered the call to forge relationships and promote the best of Philadelphia through conversations, dinners, tours, events, and exchanges.

Citizen Diplomacy International has served over 30,000 Philadelphians and 50,000 emerging leaders worldwide, equipping them with leadership skills and a global peer network. Today, we introduce 1,200 influential international professionals and students to their Philadelphia counterparts each year. These connections continue to be powerful tools to reinforce American security and build a more civil, peaceful and prosperous world.

Our Exchanges

Diplomacy Requires the Long GAme

Relationships are cultivated for years, or even decades, with long term gains. Because of you, 99% of our international guests return to their countries inspired to create change in their communities so that:

Citizens have equal rights

Individuals have the right to free speech

Rule of law is fundamental

Elections are free and fair cornerstones of democractic government

2019 Impact in Numbers

Countries inspired us to see the world differently

Visitors came to Philadelphia last year to teach us new viewpoints and exchange great ideas. Education is a vital tool in building healthy cities, peacebuilding and business negotiations, too.

International visitors sparked curiosity

Citizen Diplomacy is a catalyst for questions and critical thinking about our world. What does the world believe about America? What do we have in common? What would it be like to walk in your shoes?

Relationships initiated

Each visitor is a chance for you to begin something new - a friendship, a partnership, a conversation that leads to a more civil, peaceful and prosperous world.

Hours of dialogue

Dialogue is the heart of diplomacy. Our programs create safe spaces where people can talk to each other with respect. By developing skilled communicators, we also develop educated, mindful leaders.

International Exchange
Invests in Philadelphia

Average days in Philadelphia
For every $1 invested by the City of Philadelphia, Citizen Diplomacy brings in $4.32 in direct spending by international visitors
Total annual economic impact
Visitor spending on lodging, transportation, and meals

Stories of Impact

Impact: Promoting Higher Education

La Salle Supports International Students through College Admissions With nearly 200 international students from more than 50 nations, La Salle knows how important small class…

Impact: Empowering Youth to be Global Citizens

Thanks to you, we embarked on a new journey to support an expanded high school exchange program in 2017. With your help, the program has…

Women in Diplomacy Ami Bharat Chheda

Ami Bharat Chheda is an emerging leader who wants to change the lives of youth in India. Ami visited Philadelphia for a month-long fellowship with…

Sports Diplomacy with American Football and Coaches from Russia

In October, Marla Axelrod, director of Legal and Government Affairs for the Philadelphia Eagles gave Russian football coaches and managers the experience of a lifetime…

Impact: Creating Mutual Understanding

Promoting Social Change Through the Arts “I realize that I’ve just had an experience of a lifetime. I am not going to be the same…

Impact: Expanding Business

Eds and Meds continue to be the sectors that attract international businesses and delegations. Philadelphia continues to reach out to China and Japan to expand…

Women in Diplomacy Lauren Swartz

Lauren Swartz’s goal is to position Philadelphia as a global destination for business, talent and  investment. As the senior director of International Business for the…

Impact: Fostering Success for Entrepreneurs

In April, a multinational group of 24 entrepreneurs and professionals visited Philadelphia to connect to our thriving social entrepreneurship sector and share the innovations that…

Celebrating 40 Years of Diplomacy with China and Sister City Tianjin

Philadelphia and Tianjin became Sister Cities on December 6, 1979. Over the last 40 years, Citizen Diplomacy and its members have witnessed the dramatic evolution…

Citizen Diplomats are.. Hosts

All year long, Citizen Diplomats show American hospitality to international guests and make their visit in Philadelphia as enriching as possible through a night of…

Citizen Diplomats are.. Community Connectors

Modelling Diversity and Multiculturalism The Philadelphia chapter of 100 Black Men hosted 10 community leaders and activists from Africa to examine the impact of multiculturalism…

Randy Duque Philadelphia Commission on Human Rights

As deputy director of the Community Relations Division, Randy develops and stewards community partnerships to prevent intergroup tension and promote understanding among the City’s diverse…

Become a
Citizen Diplomat

Join us in creating a more peaceful, prosperous world, one conversation at a time. Become a member to receive first priority for new opportunities and events. Or make a donation to empower Philadelphia’s citizen diplomats. 

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