The Business Council of Mongolia’s (BCM) March Monthly Meeting was held on March 28 at the Shangri-La Hotel, with Chairman B.Byambasaikhan hosting for an audience of around 100 members and invited guests. The topic of the meeting was the “Study on the role of government based on the principles of the Mongolian Constitution for sustainable social development.”
BCM Board Member and CEO of Clean Energy Asia Mr. Orchlon opened up the third meeting of the year. Orchlon was also recently named as one of Forbes' Asia 30 Under 30.
In 2018, BCM held comprehensive board elections to elect the 15 members of the Board of Directors. “BCM is the most well-placed platform to be able to unite and align the public sector with the private sector with the policymakers,” he stated.
As part of BCM’s mission to build this alignment at the Board level, six Working Groups, all headed by Board Members, are being driven vigorously and energetically. An update on the activities of these Working Groups will be emailed to members next week.
The BCM currently has 256 members, with a current renewal rate of 78% thus far for 2019.
New members also received their Certificate of Membership after the presentation and panel:
- Bank of China - (website)
- Mobicom Corporation - (website)
- Global Outsourcing LLC - (website)
- Media Group LLC - (info)
- ItZone LLC - (website)
- Nomin & Advocates LLP - (website)
- CoverHill LLC - (LinkedIn)
The key objective of this meeting was to present the results of an eight-month study by TUS Solution LLC and hold a discussion on the results.
PRESENTATION ON “ANALYSIS AND OUTLINING OF THE CONSTITUTION OF MONGOLIA BASED ON SYSTEM MODELING”
Click here for full presentation (Mongolian only)
Background on systems analysis
Mr. D.Jargalsaikhan presented the results of the study named above. Jargalsaikhan is on the BCM’s Board of Directors and chairs the Economic Freedom and Competitiveness Working Group. He is also the Chairman of TUS Solution LLC as well as Founder and Chairman of the Young Researcher Support Foundation.
In 2017, a smaller-scale study on the same topic produced interesting results, which prompted the Director of TUS Solution to broaden the study to see if the results held. The team working on this more recent studied comprised an eclectic group of professionals from various fields: philosophy, sociology, psychology, public health, theoretical mathematics, political science, business, and law.
Most studies on the Constitution of Mongolia are conducted by lawyers and other legal experts. Studying the Constitution from a systems analysis viewpoint is something novel which has rarely been considered. To use the metaphor of a house, when something malfunctions in the house, we form or already have a mental image of what or where the problem lies, and perhaps how to solve the malfunction. Like a house, the Constitution is an abstraction of interrelated ideas that is unique from and greater than the sum of its parts.
The study was an attempt to form a sort of “mental image” of society and the constitution, perhaps something Plato might call the “ideal state” of the “form” of the Constitution of Mongolia – something which can never be reached but something which we must continually strive for.
As a humble disclaimer, Mr. Jargalsaikhan noted that this study was the first of its kind and that there can be areas of improvement on future investigations.
Certainly a complex and intricate topic to grasp, and at times reading off like aWittgensteinian treatise, but highly useful nonetheless.
The 5 axioms of a living system:
- Having a unified purpose
- The purpose has to be realized through actions and/or duties to undertake
- The results and performance of the activities undertaken to realize the purpose must produce information or data for the concerned parties
- Information and data on results and performance must be measurable
- The system’s realization of its purpose is continually improved through corrections on impediments and malfunctions
The study had two key objectives:
- To identify the base reasons for societal distortions we see in Mongolia today
- To create a visual model of how society is to operate according to theConstitution of Mongolia (in presentation linked above)
There is the key phrase and "mission" in the preamble of the Constitution, "aspiring toward the supreme objective of building a humane, civil and democratic society in the country." So how well is that aspiration being realized today?
Results of the study
The study produced 11 conclusions:
- The phrase in the constitution "aspiring toward the supreme objective of building a humane, civil and democratic society in the country" satisfied the criterion of a unified purpose of the citizenry.
- The concepts in the Constitution contain the logical foundations to constitute a social system capable of fulfilling its purpose
- The various representatives of the state – president, parliament, government, judges, prosecutors, and regional administrations – are not being properly governed in accordance with Article 19.1 of the Constitution.
- Of all the organizations tasked with representing the state in order to implement the goals of the Constitution, only the Constitution Court is being governed in accordance with Article 19.1.
- The duties of political parties and their activities in order to realize the goals of the Constitution before the people are not defined by the Constitution nor other laws.
- Because there are no laws defining the measurement and evaluation of participants that are to fulfill the "mission," there is no agreed-upon method of measuring the performance or implementation of the "mission."
- Because there are no laws tasking an organization or entity with the monitoring of participants that are to fulfill the "mission," no such monitoring has been conducted on the performance and results of the "mission."
- Because the efficiency to be achieved by the various organizations and officials representing the state in order to fulfill the "mission" of the Constitution is not defined through performance and results pertaining to the objectives, there is no incentive for these participant units to strive towards the "mission."
- Because the criteria for evaluating the "mission" stated in the Constitution is not defined, it presents the opportunity for organizations and officials whose duty it is to represent the state to operate outside of the directive laid out in Article 19.1.
- Because the criteria, information, and duties necessary to the entities representing the state to find the reasons for hindrances they face and are bound to face and fulfill the “mission” are not defined in the law, it is not possible to find and point out the base reasons for such hindrances of the past and potential hindrances in the future.
- Because it is not defined in the law how the participant units that are to fulfill the “mission” are to enable the citizenry to discuss the planning and reporting of the provision of citizens’ rights stated in Article 16 and duties of the state laid out in Article 19, the opportunity for citizens to participate in the planning and oversight of the fulfillment of the “mission” is restricted.
After the presentation, a panel discussion was held to discuss the study. Moderating the panel was B.Bolor-Erdene, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of trends.mn, and the panelists were:
- B.Enkhbayar, Former Deputy Minister of Justice and Internal Affairs
- D.Jargalsaikhan, BCM Board of Member and Director of TUS Solution
- S.Erdenebold, President of the Democratic Youth Union
- O.Mashbat, Political Researcher
With the political backdrop of the controversial legal amendment recently initiated by President Battulga and swiftly ratified by parliament, many panelists alluded both directly and indirectly to the turn of events in the political scene, generally in dismay.
One of several things that the panelists agreed on was the need for legal reform, whether that be in the form of constitutional amendments or making sure subordinate laws align with the constitution. "There are labor unions in Mongolia whose 'constitution' is older than our national Constitution," said one panelist.
Given the variety of backgrounds among the panelists, people saw the issue from different angles. Whereas a businessman or economist anticipates risks or hindrances, the lawyer generally looks in hindsight, saying "here is where we went wrong." However, lawyers do not possess a monopoly on discussion of the Constitution, stated Enkhbayar.
The first organization to implement systems engineering comprehensively was the US Department of Defense, and the second was NASA. However, systems modeling can be harnessed to improve the effectiveness of any organization big or small, or in the case of the study, society as a whole.
One tangential topic raised by Erdenebold was the surge of online fake news, trolls, and other such thing which have an effect on society, and the capacity to influence elections. We must be very aware of this and the challenge this presents for democracies, he stated.
As mentioned by Erdenebold, in the end, the checks and balance and separation of powers must be ensured by the constitution, and that if this is lost, generations may suffer as a result.
The BCM would like to extend our appreciation to all the presenters, panelists, and attendees of the Monthly Meeting.