Each country has its own culture and history and the best governance is based on a country's own environment, a U.S. expert said here Tuesday.
Nicolas Berggruen, chairman of investment group Berggruen Holdings, delivered a speech on governance in China and the United States to the Chicago business community at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.
He told Xinhua in an interview it was important for each country to respect the history and culture of the other and not to impose new systems on each other.
"All systems need to be self-corrected," Berggruen said. "China can be self-corrected. It doesn't mean it should copy the West. It should make changes in the Chinese way."
He suggested the United States and China should learn from each other. "China is more community focused, more consensus, more long term, and more merit-based."
By the same token, China could learn from the United States and be more sensitive to individuals, more transparent, and more accountable.
China was a meritocracy in which capable people were promoted through the ranks, he said.
"It's very competitive, and there is a human resource system that evaluates people," he said.
However, the importance of relationships in Chinese culture compromised the merit-based system and resulted in cases of corruption, he said.
"We have the same issue in the United States," he said. "People with money can invest in politics and family dynasties such as the Kennedys are created."
In both countries, the only way to solve the problem was to give people ways to compete based on competencies and keep the system open.
He said China had achieved enormous economic success, but needed to address the needs of the middle class and made social changes.
The U.S. expert's company has operations in the United States, Europe, and Asia, as well as real estate and financial investments globally.