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The Geo Interview with Prof. Bann Seng Tan

Updated: Apr 15

Professor Bann Seng Tan is an Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Relations at Ashoka University. This interview discusses Professor Tan’s recent book, “International Aid and Democracy Promotion: Liberalization at the Margins.” The importance of methods and practical career advances for aspirant PHDs in Political Science were discussed.

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Image Graphics by Team Geostrata

Asish: Welcome viewers. Thank you so much for taking out the time for watching another Geo Interview. We are back with another exclusive speaker, we have with us Professor Bann Seng Tan who is an associate professor of political science and international relations at Ashoka University India. Today we will talk to Professor Tan about his recent book that is “International Aid and Democracy Promotion: Liberalization at the Margins.” We would like to welcome you, Professor Tan, to the Geostrata.

Professor Tan: Thank you very much. It's my pleasure to be here.

Asish: Thank you, Professor. So let's begin with a simple thought. What motivated you to write a book around the dynamics of democracy promotion, and foreign aid?

Professor Tan: Sure. I'm going to talk about two things. The first one is, I guess the international context for the book and if my audience is interested, I can also talk a little bit about the professional context. Let me just first talk about the actual academic context.

The book is a reaction to this particular time in international politics. I characterize this time as a time of feckless democracies, feckless as in cowardly democracies, and resurgent authoritarianism. It's not only the fact that authoritarian regimes are aggressive about the promotion of their regime and pushing their preferred ways of doing things but also the fact that those policymakers who are interested in democracy promotion seem to lack a strategy, they don't seem to know how to promote democracy. My book is an attempt to push back against some of the more aggressive forms of authoritarianism.

I want to be clear, the prescriptions in my book do not solve some of the crises within liberal democracy. They are very long, they are very systematic and they are severe. But I want to suggest that if you implement some of the strategies in my book, it may buy us some time to fix some of the serious problems within liberal democracy. That is the academic context. At a more personal level, why did I work on this book? You may or may not know my Ph.D., the dissertation in my Ph.D. was actually on democratic peace and not on foreign aid.

The norm in Ph.D. in political science is that after you do your dissertation, you try to convert it into a book. I did not do that, my next project will be on Democratic Peace, which is based on my dissertation project. One reason why I started to focus on foreign aid was that near the end of my Ph.D. process, I basically got a visiting assistant professorship at the College of William and Mary, which is based in Virginia, United States. Now, the College of William and Mary has a think tank, called AidData.

The think tank does a lot of empirical research on foreign aid and then I realized that foreign aid data sets are very useful. I started to learn more and more about foreign aid and I realize that empirical projects are useful enough for me to in a sense start to focus on foreign aid. As I pursued the book and the research on foreign aid, I started to develop a theory, some empirical quantitative chapters, and some case studies.

As it developed in this substance, I decided why not just develop it in a full book project. I got a book contract from the editor at Routledge. And then I started to work on the book and then it developed into the book that you see today.

Asish: It was a very interesting anecdote in the sense of how you actually defied the norms and started another project right after your Ph.D. It’s a very interesting take on that. So building upon this could you please unwrap the overall argument of your book and the selectorate theory that you used to support your arguments and how could that be understood by a layman?

Professor Tan: I'm going to focus mainly on the arguments of the book near the end, just give a short summary about the selectorate theory.

This book fundamentally is an attempt to understand the dynamics of bargaining between the donors and the recipients and I want to use the insight from that in order to understand the cost of democracy promotion.

Since I'm speaking to a general audience, sometimes it's useful to start with a pair of contrasting examples. So that's what I'm going to do. I want to draw your audience's attention to 2013 when there was a military coup where General El-Sisi overthrew the elected government of Mohamed Morsi. Immediately after the coup, the United States came under political pressure to cut off its foreign aid to Egypt. Let me just give some context.

There is a law passed by Congress and this is an act of a government when it requires the automatic suspension of American foreign aid to any government that has undergone a military coup. At that time, the White House was under the Obama administration. The Obama Administration refused to cut off any foreign aid to Egypt and any punishment for the military coup was very light, and very symbolic. In fact, the White House went out of its way to deny what happened in Egypt as a military coup because the moment you call it a military coup there are legal ramifications.

Now you have to cut off foreign aid which the American Administration didn't want to do and I draw that in contrast to another setback into democracy. This was in 2006 in Fiji, a Pacific island. There, after the military coup, the United States Administration had no problem cutting off the foreign aid to Fiji, demanding a return to democracy as a precondition for the resumption of aid citing the same act of congress it refused conspicuously to apply with regards to Egypt.

This means there is a puzzle. Why is it that there are two setbacks to democracy but the United States as a donor has a very different way of reacting to these two causes? The main argument is that the US as a donor is reacting very differently depending on how important the recipient is to the donors. Egypt is important and because it is important, the West as donors are now very willing to apply that much diplomatic pressure on Egypt.

Fiji is not important because it is not important, the West is less willing to indulge in a call for democracy. What does this mean? It means that theoretically recipient salience, how important the recipient is to donors in general is now a key variable. I started to build a theory.

I identify a class of recipients that have a lot of value, have diplomatic leverage, and are able to resist donor pressure. For the sake of subsequent statistical analysis, I'm going to call them the primary recipients. You can think of these as the “Egypts” of the recipient world. I'm arguing, I'm focusing on this book and I argue that when you put diplomatic pressure on the “Egypts” of the recipient world, it’s likely to fail. It's likely not to enhance democracy. My insight suggests that there should be another group of recipients, which don't have that much to offer and lacks leverage.

This group of recipients, I call them the secondary recipients. Now you can, if you like, think of them as the “Fijis” of this recipient world. This group of recipients is susceptible, more vulnerable to donor pressure and when you try to persuade them using foreign aid to advance democracy, you are more likely to succeed.

Therefore the argument of my book is that as an allocation strategy, you should focus on the secondary recipients, not the primary recipients. I call the strategy that targets the secondary recipients “The strategy of liberalization at the margins”. So, in the book, this serves as the subtitle of the book. Here I talk about that liberalization at the margins, in a sense that encapsulates in a nutshell, the argument of the book. Now onto the other point, on Selectorate Theory. I'm just going to give a short overview or synopsis. It's associated with the arguments of Bruce Bueno de Mesquita and a group of Scholars based around New York University.

The Selectorate theory is a middle-range theory where they talk about the imperative of our policymakers to seek political survival and in their quest for political survival, they might be driven or inclined toward certain types of policies. So, the theory has a nice way of explaining why democratic policymakers tend to prefer certain types of policies in contrast to authoritarian policymakers who tend to systematically prefer other types of policies.

That theory can be applied to things like International conflict or in this case, applied to foreign aid. Why is it that democratic donors prefer to give foreign aid, all other things being equal, to an authoritarian recipient as opposed to democratic recipients? Why is it the case? According to the Selectorate Theory, democracies normally don't promote democracies if anything, they typically promote autocracies and so on.

My book is in a sense responding to that particular academic literature.

Asish: The very start of the story of your book is very interesting in the sense that one might be able to keep their eyes open to what goes on across the world and see how actors are responding in one particular way in one instance, but in some other way in some other instance. So what does it imply for the idea of being open to questioning what happens and questioning this contrasting behavior and seeing what insights can one derive from such questions?

So building upon this, we also notice that your book has a lot of quantitative sides to it as opposed to let's say the bend of the current times when there are a lot of qualitative sides of case studies. But you focus on hard facts and numbers to write your arguments. So building up on this, could you briefly walk us through the methodology that you have employed in your book to sustain your argument?

Professor Tan: Sure, I can do that. I'm going to talk about the methodology in the book which consists of both statistics and case studies. I'm going to start by just giving a brief overview of the stats and then we move on to the case studies. And in both cases, I will be focusing on the big picture. Let's talk about the stats. I have a data set and the data set was an original one. When I compiled data on the donor's intention with regard to the aid project as well as the recipients' regime characteristics, I used data 2.1, a particular version of the data set and I used the Polity IV dataset to measure region characteristics.

This gives me another data set that has a domain from approximately 1973 to 2006. Now I'm going to talk a little bit about the variables in the data set. The dependent variable, which is the outcome, is basically a change in the regime of the recipients, five years after aid completion. It's a regime change statistic but this is from the polity for composite regime score. Now I have three independent variables. The first independent variable is the recipient's salience. How important the recipient is to the donors in general.

I build a composite index with sub-sub components. So it is a composite, an aggregated index trying to capture information on strategic value and the commercial value of a given recipient. My other independent variable is this idea of donor pressure, which is trying to measure and is a proxy indicator of whether the recipient at that moment is under some kind of diplomatic pressure from the donors. So, take note, now I have two independent variables, the recipient salience, and donor pressure.

My argument is conditional, I am speculating based on my theory that the same donor pressure which fails to be effective on the primary recipient might actually be effective on the secondary recipient. This is what we sometimes call a conditional argument, right? Depending on the status of the recipient, it can or may not be successful.

So, this means that methodologically, I now need to create a third independent variable called an “Interaction term” that you derive by multiplying the donor pressure with the recipient salience. That means now I have three independent variables “Recipient Salience”, “Donor Pressure”, and the “Interaction term”. So, what do I do with all these variables? I include a whole set of control variables, the details are in the book and I do multiple robustness checks.

The main point here is that I use regression analysis on the panel data with country-fixed effects. The reason why I use country-fixed effects is that my theory is not explaining every single cause of democratization given a recipient. I'm focusing on the cause of democratization or political liberalization that is due to foreign aid. That means they can be reliably attributed to donor pressure from the outside. I'm not explaining every single situation of democratization but only those that are linked reliably to foreign aid. Now, that's the big picture. The other chapters of the book, I spread out and I examine the data over different ways of slicing the econometrics.

In chapter two, I explored the data on a global scale. In chapter three, I disaggregated the recipient segments into their component parts, and then I touched on them individually. The reason why I do that is to answer the question, whether individual sub-components are actually more salient and more important than others.

So that means I test for whether my variable of recipient salience is an artificial construct or not. In chapter four, I test I segregate the data into regional groups. So I focus on Asia and Africa. And I look for regional dynamics. I want to understand whether the same donor pressure may be more effective in one region compared to another. So that covers the basics.

I also have case studies, which are used to illustrate this theory. My case studies talk about Egypt, Myanmar, as well as Fiji. How do I choose those case studies? That case, the case of Egypt was chosen on the spectrum of recipient salience. Egypt is a representation of a primary recipient, he has a lot of bargaining power. I show how Mubarak, over the 30 years in Egypt, was able to deflect American pressure to liberalize. By contrast, I focus on Egypt as a case study. Egypt is a case of the opposite salience. It represents a secondary recipient, it has very little salience after the military coup, I trace the active foreign policy of the military junta of Fiji. I show how they set up their own international organization, they try to seek China foreign aid, and so on.

And I show that because it has very little to offer, it actually doesn't have that much bargaining power. And in 2014, Fiji was persuaded to hold a multiparty election and return back to democracy. In the case of Myanmar, I talked about how Myanmar is a moderate case, that means it's in between the primary recipient and the secondary recipient, and I show how the junta tried to play one donor group against another.

So they tried to switch from the Western can to the Chinese can, and they tried to switch back. In the case study, I talked about the phenomena of donor switching, when the recipient tried to play one donor group against another. These are the case studies. The point here is that the statistics are the ones that test the theory whereas the case studies are the ones that illustrate that theory.

Asish: Okay. Interesting. In defense, there are still tools available within the large domain of Political Science, which one can use to substantiate case studies and arguments with a lot of data, which a lot of people don't take seriously these days, like students, let's say, to say the least.

What was your experience in using so much of data in political science to drive home your argument or would you like to, you know, convey something in terms of methodology to students to scholars, who are actually serious about the discipline of political science?

Professor Tan: Okay, sure, sure. I'll give it a shot. Right. So, my PhD is from America. City University in New York, I'm trained in a particular school of thought, where if you want to study political science, or if you want to study international relations, when you make an argument is not just purely abstract, it has to be based in solid, certain empirical evidence, that means if you have a good theory, you should be able to get predictions or hypotheses, and then they should be empirical. And that there should be some data to test the hypothesis.

In a sense, theory, building or advancing knowledge is contingent on the quality of the data. That means to do proper science, you have to deal with phenomena that are quantifiable, that is measurable. So when you can do that, you're now following a particular tradition, which for lack of a better phrase, I'm going to call it social science. That means it is not like humanities, it is actually empirical.

By dealing with empirical evidence, Social Science is no longer purely abstract.there is some data. This is important, because if you have empirical data, you can falsify a theory and falsification of a theory is an important tool to advance knowledge. So it's a hallmark of social science, by which I mean proper normal scientific theory.

Asish: Perfect. Makes sense. We'll try our best to, you know, let students know about this view of looking at data and arguments, building upon your donors pitching point, which is very unique in Excel. If alternative donors, let's say China, use, you know, the instrument, the foreign aid without the democracy conditionality, would this not automatically undermine the donor pressure of, let's say, Western donors such as the United States?

Professor Tan:Yes, and no, let me qualify. I know, in popular literature, there's a lot of media talk about the rise of China, the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative. The implication of Chinese foreign aid, to be used as a tool by authoritarian aid recipients to deflect or push away donor pressure. The argument that is in the popular literature runs a bit like this, I am under pressure from the west to democratize. I don't want to democratize so therefore, I turn to the Chinese for foreign aid.

Because the Chinese don't really care about democracy promotion, the fact that I can get Chinese aid, without the democratization conditionality is now what we call in game theory, the exit option that China serves as the exit option to respond to Western pressure. The assumption is that the presence of China as an exit option automatically negates Western pressure. My subject, my studies, and the case study of Myanmar suggests that may not be true. I show in the case study how the existence of an alternative patron, in this case, China may not necessarily end up in the aid recipient’s favor.

Under some conditions the alternative patron, in this case, China, may use their increased leverage to extract more concessions from the aid recipient. And because the demanded concessions can be painful and costly; at some point, a recipient under pressure may decide to switch back to the initial donors as a way of restoring leverage.

I recognize this can be abstract. Let me give a teaching example from something that will be more topical to illustrate what I mean.

I'm going to draw a teaching example from the sanctions literature. Many of your readers will be familiar with the war on Ukraine. So as a result of the war on Ukraine, the West put sanctions on Russia, that means Russia can no longer sell its energy supplies to the west, the Russian response is to say, Hey, it's okay. I have alternative customers. I can sell it to India, I can sell it to China. So India and China are now the exit option for Russia. Here's the catch. Even though Russia can sell the oil to India or China, they want the oil to be bought at the highest possible price, which is, let's be honest, the Western price, right?

They want the same price as say Germany is willing to pay on the international market, when they turn around to in a country like India, or China, that price to buy at that Western price, which is the German market price, the Indians and the Chinese are saying no, I'm not going to buy at that price. Because you can't sell it on the western market. It has to be a discount before the Indians and the Chinese will buy it. And that discount is going to be substantial, is going to be large.

Which means that, even though the Russians have an alternative market, they are selling the oil at a discount below the market price, they could have ordinary cotton. And that discount can be very large, it can be very painful from the Russian point of view, but if I'm putting in my be in my interest, to try to reach some kind of accommodation with the West, because the Western pressure is now hurting my ability to sell the oil at the price I would like to have gotten from the Chinese and from the Indians.

So this is just rational and has nothing to do with whether I like the West or I like the Chinese , the issue is what is the best way to get the best price I can get from the oil. And I'm arguing that sometimes the best way is to make sure that you do not have just an alternative market, you also have to make sure that you have access to your original first market.

Because once you have that, then you know you can switch reliability between the markets, then that will mean that the discount you have to offer will be smaller, that gets you a better price. My insight is to apply this from sanctions to foreign aid. And I'm showing that sometimes the aid recipients might be forced to liberalize anyway, if only because it's a way of getting more leverage against the chosen donor groups. I show how that happened in the case of Myanmar, right how they were persuaded reluctantly to return to democracy, right.

Asish: That's really insightful in this when you use the Russian interpreter to talk about rationality, and in terms of what our rational foreign policy would look like. And then when we introduce other elements that let's say sentiments, or let's say even some of the consequences to it, and then things turn around, and let's say a foreign policy becomes more or less a domestic policy. I don't know if you will agree to this conclusion or not.

But also, depending upon your insight, especially at the state level. We also see alternative institutions cropping up under the BRICS framework, for example, the Asia Development Bank, or let's say the BRICS New Development Bank, and then these currency swap agreements happening between these global south countries respond to, you know, not acknowledge or not bear the dollar hegemony anymore.

Do you see like, now, if these countries these developmental banks, advance loans, without the democracy conditionality, which is not the case with like the World Bank loans, they're also the US has a lot of us a lot of say, or a lot of heavy duty, if this is not Western institutions, lending institutions crop up, and they are putting in a sizable scale, which they are slowly, beauty, the democracy conditionality of events changing over time.

Professor Tan: Let me make a few qualifiers. The first point is the book or in the field of foreign aid. There's a distinction between bilateral aid that means just between one donor and one aid recipient, and multilateral aid, where you have less aid, like, as you mentioned, World Bank, or the brig or the Asian Development Bank, a big multilateral organization giving loan as part of the organization, that means is a many to one type of relationship. In the foreign aid literature, there's a distinction between the two, right, so I would like my audience to be clear, the book, right?

This book is mostly about bilateral aid and not about multilateral aid. To that extent, it doesn't actually talk about things like World Bank or in some of your multilateral landing, among other things, when you include multinational organizations is more complicated because now you have multiple stack state actors sharing a membership of a big organization. So now you have to talk about the politics of the organization, right, and that the different international organizations are dominated by different countries.

For example, the World Bank and the IMF are usually Western dominated but I'm pretty sure the IMF is usually more European dominated, whereas the World Bank is more American dominated. I think there's an informal deal between the American and Europeans such that the Europeans get to appoint the chief executive of the IMF, while Americans get to appoint the leader of the World Bank. This is why the head of the IMF is usually European and why the head of the World Bank is usually American.

So different organizations have different dynamics depending on membership and depending on who is the most important actor within the multilateral organization. What does this mean? It means that it's no longer bilateral and actually quite complicated because there is both that state to state bargaining and then there is within-the-international organization bargaining. There's an increased complexity here. This is not my formal area of study but I recall there are scholars that study this mulOne of them is Randall W. Stone (see He has a book where he talks about multilateral organizations and loan conditionality.

My book doesn't actually talk about multinational loans. Now, the next point. I think you're speculating over this issue of whether the multi-national organizations don't really care about democratization. Does that, in a sense, weaken the leverage of the Western donors that are interested in democratization? The short answer is generally the answer is yes. But again, this is context to context, because many of the standard Western-led multilateral organizations in their constitutions usually state that democratization is not their primary priority. One exception is the American-led Millennium Challenge Fund.

That one is an initiative by President Bush so that what they do focus on democratization. But by and large, a lot of the international lending organizations, their concerns are usually either commercial or developmental. Usually, they don't focus on democracy promotion. Therefore democracy promotion tends to be more of a bilateral concept. The big assumption I can think of would be the European Union with good governance or good neighborhood policy, right? The European Union does care about democracy promotion and they do use foreign aid and development aid as a tool to encourage democratic reforms in aspirant candidates that want to join the EU.

Asish: Thank you so much for that insight. But we have to keep in mind, you know, what are the questions to ask and then what are the arguments that what you do in that the resources that are used to go upon by the thinking of this conversation really adds a lot of substance, a lot of direction.

Do you want somebody who wants to think about a particular aspect of foreign policy or international affairs? So to conclude the conversation lastly, what would be your message to students and researchers in political science?

Professor Tan: So if you don't mind, I'm going to respond to your question by asking you a few questions on my own.When you say the students and the researchers, do you mean you want me to give advice to new candidates joining a Ph.D. in political science? Is that what you mean?

Asish: Yes, we can say that.

Professor Tan: Okay, this may sound flippant but I am sincere here. If you are thinking about doing a Ph.D. in political science or not, my first response is don't, don't do it. The issue here is that if you want to do a Ph.D. in political science and presumably the goal is not just the Ph.D. alone, you want a Ph.D. because it qualifies you eventually to get a job in academia, to become a professor, teaching in a college, and so on.

My best advice is before you enter into the program, you should take some time to analyze the job market for such things. That is a mismatch between the supply of new PhDspeople who want a job, and the demand for such people. Because of this mismatch that there are far more candidates than there are job openings, which means that for any single vacant position there is high competition. And The academic job market is international., if the job is decent, the competition will not be only the locals, you will have to contend with international competition as well. What does this mean?

Even if you are talented, and you are very good at your work, there might be somebody else who's just as talented, just as hardworking, and that means that the odds of getting that job is low. My point is thatI don't want you to waste several years of your life on the small chance of getting a job. Do your homework about the job market before you do a PhD.

For instance, if journalism is a dying market, there will be few jobs. If you are a young journalist trying to enter the journalist job market. I think the correct thing to do as a young journalist is to think this through carefully. If you are entering a dying market, you may put yourself into a difficult position. Therefore I think you really should do your homework first. My experience is that even as I give advice not to, potential students will go ahead and apply anyway to PhDs. They refuse to listen. So if you insist on doing it, what will be some of the things you need to do to maximize your chance of getting a job?

Number one, make sure you get into the top schools because the more highly ranked schools are more recognized. Not all Phds are equal. Get into the best schools you can get into that particular field after you get into the school. Try to be very careful about who you work with your advisor because that guy who is your advisor will be the one writing your letter of recommendation.

You need a very good working relationship with that adviser and he's going to have a major say in the future trajectory of your career. And then you need to quickly set yourself up as a junior scholar with a record of publishing. That means even though you are doing your Ph.D., you should be thinking about how can you turn whatever your studying into a publishable, peer-reviewed journal so that you can now build a reputation that you can show on your CV that you have a publishing track record so that when you apply for a job, they are more likely to take you seriously compared to a competing candidate that has little published. That's going to take time. And then you still need to finish your dissertation because your dissertation writing will also take a long time.

A quick piece of advice about the dissertation, which I learned from others. Your dissertation should not be your magnum opus. Don't waste too many years trying to affect your dissertation, it's just your first piece of scholar writing. Hence the expression: “A good dissertation is a written one”. Everybody's unwritten dissertation can be as good as yours, but since it's never written, it will not be recognized. Therefore the trick is not to write that perfect dissertation , that will take too long. Just write a good enough dissertation. After you get your dissertation, concentrate on publishing.

This could mean journal articles and eventually a book. For most candidates, their first book is the dissertation because that is where the bulk of research for the book was done . In my case, I went on a different route . This book is not based on my dissertation. This book is the product of my research outside of my dissertation topic. When you choose your dissertation, you probably should think ahead about how to turn it eventually into a book-length project.

Another related point is that sometimes people choose their research based on what they think the market wants. For example, if young Indians students anticipate IT skills will be in demand in the future, they study computer engineering.

You know, this is what happens if you do that, right? There will be a massive oversupply of computer engineers. The point is to be strategic about what you study. You want to study something that is market relevant. But there is a risk of focusing on only market-relevant research. Because you are making a prediction on what the market will be like five or ten year later. Your guess may be wrong. If you guessed wrongly, then you are stuck with an expertise in research that the market doesn't value.

That's a problem, right? How confident are you in your prediction on the future of the industry ? What is at stake is your own personal career. My advice and this is just a personal take. You will be working on your dissertation for a very long time. By and large, you should choose something that you are personally interested in, something that you care about. So for me, I care about democracy. I care about the decline of the liberal world order.

When you are working on your book, you should write about that which is personally worthwhile to you. If your motivation is to write solely to get a job, that lack of “passion” may not be the motivation you need to actually finish that book. That is why it is risky to study what you anticipate the job market will demand.

The other thing that I would say as career advice is that if you are determined to give a PHD or a masters a try, you want to think about what I describe as a backup plan. What happens if you fail to get a job? That means don't just focus on getting an academic job. Think about what other jobs outside of academia you can get while you are pursuing your master's or your Ph.D.

During your graduate training, try to learn some kind of quantitative skills that will be useful in the nonacademic job market. Large multinational companies always want people who can do statistical methods. That means those skills that you can acquire as part of your program can be useful outside of academia. You mean you want such skills just as a backup plan in case your primary plan to enter academia fails.

So let me summarize my advice. Do market research. Before you spend ten years of your life, please do the research on the job market. Because you really shouldn't jump in before you have done your research about this. So you treat this as the most important research project that you can do right now.

If you determine that it's worth investing ten years of your life into this. If you are going to do this, do the research about your chosen graduate school. Find out about the scholars you want to work with. What do they study? Are you interested in that area as well? And then finally, when you're in the program, think about what kind of skill sets you want to acquire. Have a backup plan. I hope I have given realistic advice.

Asish: Thank you so much for that very realistic dose of advice for those who want to venture very deep into space. We would also endeavor to graduate far and wide throughout that time. So just to summarize to our audience this conversation, we talked about Professor Tan's book, International Aid and Democracy Promotion. We're going to link that book to the description itself if you want to read it.

And so we talked about the various phases of democracy aid and, you know, what are the very politics that go into that domain, how one in one particular way to what other, but not in the same way to some of the other states. Very impressive demonstrations and also support for political scientists and students. Professor Tan thank you so much for your time.

Professor Tan: Thank you. It is my pleasure.

Watch the entire interview on the Geostrata's YouTube page





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