How can one theorize and understand “publics”, their formations and their effects on politics and the organization of societies? What is, if any, the difference of a crowd and a public? These are some of the questions that the interdisciplinary conference “New Perspectives on the Public at Westminster University addresses. More information is available here. I am attending the conference on May 15th and chair one panel. It is a great opportunity to reflect on my field work what kind of publics counter-piracy governance entails. Is the contact group a public? What does it imply if the group wants to focus more on “public diplomacy”?