How is the region of Catalonia portraying itself throughout their modern movement for independence? Public relations play a significant role in this nation building process for the region of Catalonia. There is an increasing focus on the building of relationships with foreign publics: public diplomacy. Catalonia has been attempting to overcome problems derived from the absence of a state of its own, such as suppressed political perspective and a distinct identity. Another problem arises in the economy, as the prosperous region’s tax money is not reinvested into Catalonia itself. These supposed struggles were in part the result of the Franco dictatorship (1939-1975) oppression when the Catalan autonomy, language and culture were taken away, which created a mutual resentment between the Catalan people and the rest of the country of Spain.
The long standing former President of the Government of Catalonia, Jordi Pujol, understood the recent importance of international relations to political Catalan nationalism, that would come through the development of a national identity as well as the promotion of Catalonia’s aforementioned economic interests. Catalonia uses sport and tourism as a part of their public relations strategy towards creating their own identity and as a part of building a positive international reputation. They are continuing to inform the international public of the competitive and cultural advantages that Catalonia has to offer to tourists and to businesses, in hopes of terminating the possibility of the Spanish central government absorbing their culture. Through these campaigns, Catalonians are drawing a distinct public image in order to support their continued movement for independence, while the federal government, on the other hand, hopes to keep the region as a rich part of Spain.