American Spaces exemplify the U.S. commitment to a core tenet of democracy: the citizen’s right to free access to information. To that end, over 800 publicly-accessible American Spaces worldwide have been established to provide a welcoming environment where foreign visitors can gain access to authoritative information about the United States. These spaces enable U.S. Embassies and Consulates to build and strengthen relationships with host country communities, showcase American culture and values, promote English language learning, encourage study in the United States, and foster goodwill and mutual understanding. There are two main categories of American Spaces: U.S. government-owned and operated spaces and partnership spaces.
U.S. government-owned spaces consist of stand-alone facilities located outside of a U.S. Embassy’s or Consulate’s main building, staffed by embassy employees under the direction of the Public Affairs Officers (PAO). The American Center Lusaka (ACL) falls under this category.
Partnership spaces are co-managed with the embassy’s Public Affairs Section but are operated by local host institutions. Partnership spaces are often referred to as American Corners. There are two American Corners in Zambia: one hosted by the National Institute of Public Administration (NIPA) in Lusaka, and another hosted by Copperbelt University (CBU) in Kitwe.
Another type of partnership space is an American Shelf. This small outreach program is usually housed in a local library. As the name implies, print resources are provided as part of the library’s collection. When possible, materials are selected based on a target audience to more fully serve the needs of the users. The embassy provides support to an American Shelf in Mongu.