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Ernesto Zedillo has had a distinguished career in international affairs at the political and educational level. He served as President of Mexico from 1994-2000, and is currently the director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization.
A professor in the field of international economics and politics, he has been a leading voice on globalization, especially its impact on relations between developed and developing nations. He is the chairman of the Board of the Global Development Network, an organization that supports the efforts of researchers and institutes to strengthen policy toward the growth of developing countries.
He also serves on the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament, acts as co-chair of the Partnership for the Americas Commission, and co-chairs the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy, along with former presidents Cesar Gavaria of Colombia and Fernando Henrique Cardoso of Brazil.
He has authored numerous policy recommendations on the topics of Development, Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament, Climate Change, Latin America, Trade, and Global Public Goods.
In addition to his numerous awards and appointments, he remains visible in the public press as a critic on U.S. and international policy.
He earned his Bachelor′s degree from the School of Economics of the National Polytechnic Institute in Mexico and his M.A. and Ph.D. at Yale University. He was a professor at the National Polytechnic Institute and El Colegio de Mexico. From 1978-87, he was with the Central Bank of Mexico; from 1987-88, he served the National Government of Mexico as Undersecretary of Budget; from 1988-1992, as Secretary of Economic Programming and Budget Education and was appointed Secretary of Education in 1992. He served as President of Mexico from 1994-2000. Since leaving office in 2000, Zedillo has been a leading voice on globalization, especially its impact on relations between developed and developing nations.
He is the chairman of the Board of the Global Development Network, an organization that works with developing country researchers and policy research institutes to support the generation and sharing of world-class policy-relevant research on development, helping to strengthen capacity in the process. In the fall of 2008, he was appointed by the president of the World Bank to chair the High Level Commission on Modernization of World Bank Group Governance to offer an independent view on how the World Bank Group′s governance needs to adapt to the international economic realities of the 21st century. During 2007 and 2008, he served on the Commission on Growth and Development, chaired by Nobel Laureate, Michael Spence. The Commission′s final publication, The Growth Report: Strategies for Sustained Growth and Inclusive Development, was launched in May of 2008. He is a member of the Global Development Program Advisory Panel of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He edited and wrote the introduction to the volume, The Future of Globalization: Explorations in Light of Recent Turbulence (Routledge, 2008).
Nuclear Non Proliferation and Disarmament
In 2007-2008, he was asked by the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohamed ElBaradei, to chair a Commission to recommend the future course of the IAEA. In May of 2008, the Commission published its report, Reinforcing the Global Nuclear Order for Peace and Prosperity. Currently Zedillo serves on the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament.
He edited and wrote the introduction to the volume Global Warming: Looking Beyond Kyoto (Brookings Institution Press and Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, 2008). He was a member of the High Level Task Force on Climate Change organized by the Club de Madrid and the United Nations Foundation and chaired by former President of Chile, Ricardo Lagos. The Commission′s final report is Framework for a Post-2012 Agreement on Climate Change, A Proposal of the Global Leadership for Climate Action. In 2007, Zedillo hosted the only peer review discussion in the U.S. of the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, bringing together Sir Nicholas Stern and a group of climate change experts. The result was the Yale Symposium on the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, Online Book (2007). In 2006, Zedillo was honored to receive the Sustainable Development Leadership Award, presented by R.K. Pachauri on behalf of the Energy Resources Institute (TERI) in New Delhi.
Along with former US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, Thomas Pickering, Zedillo serves as co-chair of the Partnership for the Americas Commission; he co-chairs the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy along with former presidents Cesar Gavaria of Colombia and Fernando Henrique Cardoso of Brazil.
Enabling the World′s Poorest and Weakest to Share the Benefits of Globalization
Zedillo served as a member of the High Level Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor, co-chaired by Madeleine Albright and Hernando de Soto, which launched its final report, Making the Law Work for Everyone in the summer of 2008. He was a member of the International Commission on Education for Sustainable Development Practice, co-chaired by Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University and John McArthur, CEO and executive director, Millennium Promise. The Commission′s Report was launched in October of 2008. Along with Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin, he co-chaired the Commission on the Private Sector and Development, which presented its report, Unleashing Entrepreneurship, in 2004. Soon after leaving office in Mexico, Zedillo served as chairman of the United Nations High Level Panel on Financing for Development in 2001; the panel′s Report was presented in June of 2001.
In November of 2008, Zedillo contributed the policy recommendation, Save Doha to Save the G20 Summit, (click here to read the reprint on YaleGlobal Online), to an e-book edited by Barry Eichengreen and Richard Baldwin published in advance of the G20 meeting in Washington on November 15, 2008. The e-book, What G20 Leaders Must Do to Stabilise Our Economy and Fix the Financial System, is available on VoxEU, a website dedicated to research-based policy analysis and commentary from leading economists. Zedillo wrote the preface to the volume, Global Trade and Poor Nations: The Poverty Impacts and Policy Implications of Liberalization co-published by the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, the Groupe d′Economie Mondiale of Sciences Po and Brookings Institution Press in 2007. He currently chairs the second phase of the project, Global Trade and Financial Architecture co-sponsored by the Center and the U.K.′s Department for International Development (DFID). Its objectives are to identify and analyze options for making the multilateral trading system more supportive of development. Phase one of the project summarized its main findings in a policy note, Strengthening the Global Trade Architecture for Economic Development: An Agenda for Action which was distributed to representatives of all member countries in advance of the WTO ministerial in Hong Kong in 2005. From 2002 to 2005, he served as co-coordinator of the Task Force on Trade for the U.N. Millennium Project which launched its Report, Trade for Development, in January of 2005.
Peace and Security
Zedillo was appointed by Secretary General Kofi Annan to be the United Nations Special Envoy for the 2005 World Summit. Also in 2005, the Center produced the volume, Reforming the United Nations for Peace and Security: Proceedings of the YCSG workshop to analyze the Report of the High-Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change (Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, 2005).
Global Public Goods
In 2005-2006, he co-chaired the International Task Force on Global Public Goods which launched its report, Meeting Global Challenges: International Cooperation in the National Interest in Singapore in 2006 at the joint meeting of the IMF and the World Bank.
Zedillo is a Member of the following Boards: World Economic Forum, Trilateral Commission, International Advisory Board of the Council on Foreign Relations, Group of 30, Peterson Institute for International Economics, Board of Trustees of the International Crisis Group, Club de Madrid and Trustee of the Fundacion Carolina, Madrid, Spain
He is the recipient of numerous awards and honors including Honorary degrees from Yale and Harvard Universities, the University of Miami and the University of Massachusetts, Amhers; Yale′s Wilbur Cross Medal; the Franklin D. Roosevelt Freedom from Fear Award; the Democracy and Peace Award of the Institute of the Americas, University of California at San Diego; the Tribuna Americana Award, Casa de America, Madrid, Spain (December 2002); was the Commencement Speaker at Harvard University in June 2003; Gold Insigne, The Americas Society (October, 2003) and the Berkeley Medal, UC Berkeley′s highest honor (February 2004).
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