Moderator: Larry Diamond, Senior Fellow, Center on Democracy, Development & the Rule of Law (CDDRL)
Comments: James Fishkin, Director of Stanford's Center for Deliberative Democracy
Zandanshatar Gombojav is a member of the State Great Hural (Parliament) of Mongolia and has been elected as the Chairman on February 1, 2019.
Over the years, he has held key roles within the Mongolian Government including Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (2009-2012), State Minister and Chief of the Cabinet Office (2017-2019). He also served as the Deputy Minister for Agriculture (2003-2004) before being elected to Parliament for two consecutive terms. He is a member of Mongolian People's Party, the largest political force formerly known as the Mongolian Peoples’ Revolutionary Party and has served in its General Secretary’s position during 2012-2013. Before his appointment as Foreign Minister, during which he had many foreign policy accomplishments from renewing the country's foreign policy concept to adopting new trade agreements with several partners, he had over a decade long successful career in Mongolia's banking sector, working at the Agricultural Bank (Khan Bank 2003), and the Central Bank of Mongolia (2000).
After graduating from the State Institute of Finance in Russia (1992), he began his career as a Lecturer on Economics and Finance at Mongolia's Institute of Trade and Industry. He has published extensively on various banking issues and also on topics regarding the international relations process in refereed journals and different conference proceedings. He has been a strong supporter of the reform process, being actively involved in the organization of youth development.
Between 2014-2015 he was a visiting scholar at Stanford Univesity's Center on Democracy, Development, and Rule of Law, directed at the time by Prof. Larry Diamond. His research interest focused on issues related to the democratic and political development of Mongolia given its geostrategic situation. The research continued at Stanford’s Deliberative Democracy Center, directed by Prof. J.Fishkin, to a larger research project encompassing regional democratic and political development from Mongolia's unique perspective. As a strong advocate for democratic reform, Zandanshatar Gombajav was impressed by the Deliberative Democracy concept and its core application the deliberative polling as a sound tool to find common determination of political process including to change constitution. He has applied the concept of deliberative polling and pioneered to amend the Mongolian constitution which was successfully adopted by the State Great Hural on 14 November 2019.
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Larry Diamond is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies. For more than six years, he directed FSI’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law, where he now leads its Program on Arab Reform and Democracy and its Global Digital Policy Incubator. He is the founding coeditor of the Journal of Democracy and also serves as senior consultant at the International Forum for Democratic Studies of the National Endowment for Democracy. His research focuses on democratic trends and conditions around the world and on policies and reforms to defend and advance democracy. His latest book, China's Influence and American Interests (Hoover Press, 2019), focuses on promoting constructive vigilance of China’s ambitions as a global economic and military superpower. He is now writing a textbook and preparing a massive open online course (MOOC) on democratic development. Diamond’s other books include Ill Winds: Saving Democracy from Russian Rage, Chinese Ambition, and American Complacency (Penguin Press, 2019), In Search of Democracy (2016), The Spirit of Democracy (2008), Developing Democracy: Toward Consolidation (1999), Promoting Democracy in the 1990s (1995), and Class, Ethnicity, and Democracy in Nigeria (1989). He has also edited or coedited more than forty books on democratic development around the world. He directed the Stanford Program on Democracy in Taiwan for more than ten years and has been a regular visitor to Taiwan since 1995.
James S. Fishkin holds the Janet M. Peck Chair in International Communication at Stanford University where he is Professor of Communication, Professor of Political Science (by courtesy) and Director of the Center for Deliberative Democracy. He is the author of Democracy When the People Are Thinking (Oxford 2018), When the People Speak (Oxford 2009), Deliberation Day (Yale 2004 with Bruce Ackerman) and Democracy and Deliberation (Yale 1991). He has been a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a Fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences. His Deliberative Polling has been conducted in 30 countries around the world, including Mongolia. The Deliberative Poll provides data on representative and informed opinion in order to see what policies a population would support if they thought in depth about the issues.