Date of Award

January 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Pamela Kalbfleisch


Background: The reputation of a country has a significant influence on competitiveness, public diplomacy, international perception, and international relations. The aim of this research was to investigate Saudi Arabia's reputation from the point of view of the American people in The United States, compared with American perception of the Islamic Republic of Iran and Turkey. Method: A sample of 378 participants completed the 33-item questionnaire using a 7-point Likert scale. Descriptive and inferential statistics utilizing SPSS Version 26 were used to analyze the data. Results: Repeated measures ANOVA and paired t-tests revealed significant differences in the perception of Saudi Arabia and Turkey, as compared to Iran. The F test suggested the difference between means of the three groups of ratings was significant (F (1,370) = 399.885, p=.000). Post-hoc paired t-tests revealed a similar pattern. Results found that, Saudi Arabia is the most well- known among Americans, with only 9.7% showing a lack of knowledge of the country, while 90.3% indicating that they have a certain position regarding the nation. Subsequently, Turkey follows with 84.9% popularity level, and Iran being the least popular, with 83.08% having definite responses regarding the country. Americans’ overall view of other nations is determined by political leadership, more than culture and military power. Comparing cultural, political leadership and military factors across Saudi Arabia, the ANOVA and paired t-tests supported these findings. Most negative information regarding the three countries reaches Americans through multiple sources of media, more so from electronic media followed by social media). The F-ratio was statistically significant (F (1, 368) = 787.284, p=.000) for electronic media. Compared to the other two countries, Saudi Arabia has the highest level of positive perception in the eyes of the Americans.). The F-ratio was significant (F (1, 370) = 361.673, p=.000). The post-hoc paired samples t-test indicated t-values were significant for Iran and Turkey and Iran and Saudi Arabia. Conclusion: This study provides information about the American people's perceptions and how they differ among countries. The findings may serve as a guide for foreign policy.