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Public Affairs

Cultural Affairs

The Cultural Affairs Office is the part of the Public Affairs Section that has responsibility for administering the U.S. Department of State’s educational and cultural activities in France. It offers a full and varied range of cultural and exchange visitor programs that focus on issues of bilateral interest and are organized in coordination with French private and government institutions.

Speaker and Specialist Programs

The U.S. Speaker and Specialist program is designed to bring U.S. experts from a variety of fields to France to share U.S. experiences of professional relevance with French counterparts and allow an exchange of viewpoints on subjects of common interest. Programs include conferences, seminars, lectures and other public events often organized in cooperation with French academic, cultural, and professional institutions. Speaker and Specialist events are held throughout France. Read more about this program...


The Cultural Affairs Office interacts with public and private educational institutions in the United States and France as well as with both countries' Ministries of Education to develop and implement a wide variety of programs in support of common education goals.

Support is also provided for the American Studies community throughout France – students, teachers and scholars whose professional focus is American society and culture, past and present. Read more about education...

Fulbright Program

The bilateral academic exchange program between France and the United States is managed on behalf of both governments by the Franco-American Commission for Educational Exchange (FACEE). In addition to administering the competitive national selection process for Fulbright grants, the commission provides counseling on American educational opportunities to French students, whether or not they are scholarship recipients. The Commission also administers some private sector grants.

Exchange Programs

International Visitor Program

Each year nearly 5,000 exchange participants come to the U.S. on the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). More than 200,000 International Visitors have engaged with Americans through the IVLP, including more than 335 current or former Chiefs of State or Heads of Government.

Launched in 1940, the IVLP – managed by the Department of State -  helps strengthen U.S. engagement with countries around the world and cultivate lasting relationships by connecting current and emerging foreign leaders in their field (economic, political, social and other) with their American counterparts through short-term visits to the United States. IVLP exchanges include visits to five different states of the U.S. over three weeks. Participants meet with professional counterparts, visit U.S. public and private sector organizations related to the project theme and participate in cultural and social activities.

There is no application for IVLP. Participants are nominated and selected annually by the staff at U.S. Embassies around the world.

Voluntary Visitor Program

Through the Voluntary Visitor Program, the Cultural Affairs Office in Paris arranges special professional programs for high-level French individuals or groups who share a common bilateral interest with the United States. (who are paying their own way to the U.S.)


Participants in U.S. Department of State exchange programs such as the IVLP, Fulbright, etc., are invited to join State Alumni, the global online community by and for alumni.

Launched in April 2001, the website is a way for alumni and the people who hosted them in the U.S. to network and stay in touch with each other.
Upon simply registering a user name and password with the site, you can access an alumni listserv, a calendar of events, grant opportunities, career development resources, and links to useful information. You can also search the database of State Alumni community members to find colleagues, friends, and alumni with similar interests or participate in monthly live Q&As featuring guest speakers.

This interactive site is geared towards its users and encourages you to participate in creating the content. Alumni can post their own news, events, resumes or links.

Read more about State Alumni...

Artistic Programs

The Cultural Affairs Office works with French art institutions and the French government to present American arts to French audiences and to bring together both countries’ artists to work on joint projects. 

Art in Embassies

The Art in Embassies Program is a unique blend of art and diplomacy that curates exhibitions of more than 3,500 original works of art created by U.S. citizens and lent to ART. The work is displayed in the public rooms of some 170 U.S. embassy residences and diplomatic missions worldwide, providing an opportunity for thousands of guests each year to learn about the United States – its history, customs, values, and aspirations.