On the Selection of Good Leaders in a Political Meritocracy |

On the Selection of Good Leaders in a Political Meritocracy


In this talk, Prof Bell will assume that (1) it is good for a political community to be governed by high-quality rulers; (2) China’s one party political system is not about to collapse; (3) the meritocratic aspect of the system is partly good; and (4) it can be improved. On the basis of these assumptions, Prof Bell will put forward suggestions about which qualities matter most for political leaders in the context of large, peaceful, and modernizing (non-democratic) meritocratic states, followed by suggestions about mechanisms that increase the likelihood of selecting leaders with such qualities. Prof Bell will use the philosophical theory about the best possible political meritocracy in the context of a large, peaceful, and modernizing state as a standard for evaluating China’s actually-existing meritocratic system. Prof Bell will argue that China can and should improve its meritocratic system: it needs exams that more effectively test for politically relevant intellectual abilities, more women in leadership positions to increase the likelihood that leaders have the social skills required of effective policy-making, and more systematic use of a peer review system to promote political officials motivated by the desire to serve the public.


Prof Daniel A. Bell, Visiting Professor, Department of Philosophy and Political Science, National University of Singapore; Professor of Ethics and Political Theory and Director of the Center for International and Comparative Political Theory, Tsinghua University (Beijing)

Friday, 25 October 2013
12:15 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Seminar Room 3-5,
Manasseh Meyer,
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy,
469C Bukit Timah Road,
Singapore 259772

Seats are limited and will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Kindly register your interest in attending at to avoid disappointment.

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