Australia’s Reputation: A Nice-Looking Country?

Australia’s got beauty, but what about brains? Identity and reputation advisor Simon Anholt says Australia’s “one-dimensional image” leaves room for the country to be misunderstood.

It received top rankings for national beauty and “as a place to visit if money was no object,” according to an article in The Age, but the country’s tourism campaigns have left the country looking a bit light, he asserts.

”What you have is an image of a country that is considered to be very decorative, but not very useful,” he is quoted as saying.

Australia, which reportedly brought in Oprah Winfrey and her audience for some shows in December, “relied too much on ‘logos and slogans’ in its efforts to change people’s minds about the country,” the article says. Anholt’s suggestion: invest in education and other sectors “which demonstrate its seriousness and its capability.”

His comments came in the context of an address to a conference on international education, hosted in Sydney by an international student recruitment company that 38 Australian universities have a 50 percent stake in, the article said.