Sohaela Amiri

Photo of Sohaela Amiri
Assistant Policy Researcher; Ph.D. Candidate, Pardee RAND
Santa Monica Office


M.Phil. in public policy analysis, Pardee RAND Graduate School; M.P.D. in public diplomacy, University of Southern California; B.S. in architecture, University of Southern California


Sohaela Amiri is a doctoral candidate at the Pardee RAND Graduate School and an assistant policy researcher at the RAND Corporation. Her fields of interest include influence dynamics in international affairs, diplomacy, soft power, and foreign policy. Her focus is mainly on non-state and subnational actors such as cities, diaspora groups and immigrants as well as the metrics and evaluation of noncoercive statecraft.

Much of her work at RAND entails impact measurement, system analysis, program evaluation and design, as they relate to foreign policy, public health, disaster response. Amiri is also a research associate at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy, where she manages the center's research and consulting projects and programs. Prior to joining Pardee RAND, Amiri conducted research in public diplomacy, international affairs, and strategic communication, with a focus on evaluation, at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy. She has designed evaluation regimes, indices, and initiative frameworks for such organizations as the World Economic Forum and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), on topics ranging from digital media to organizational development.

Selected Publications

Sohaela Amiri and Efe Sevin, City Diplomacy: Current Trends and Future Prospects, Palgrave Macmillan, 2000


  • People shaking hands over an image of a city with a globe superimposed over the top, photo by chombosan/Getty Images

    City Diplomacy Has Been on the Rise. Policies Are Finally Catching Up

    Cities are not signing international treaties, nor do they have embassies around the world. But they can engage in all kinds of negotiations, reach agreements, and influence world politics. The State Department could tap into this power to enhance U.S. diplomacy, global image, and influence.

    Nov 22, 2019 United Press International

  • Los Angeles skyline at night, photo by Joecho-16/Getty Images

    Building a Capacity Framework for U.S. City Diplomacy

    As U.S. cities are home to two thirds of the population, the practice of city diplomacy has become essential for local communities to thrive in a globalized society. What are the necessary skills, capabilities, and resources required to craft an effective global engagement strategy?

    Mar 11, 2019 USC Center on Public Diplomacy