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The 2016 US election behind the scenes

Plenary / Democracy & Governance
english language

Who is better to give an inside account of the US election 2016 and the story of one of the most unusual elections in history than Robby Mook, Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager? Explore the dynamics, strategies and political consequences of the US presidential election 2016.


Former Campaign Manager, Hillary Clinton Presidential Campaign, Washington, D.C.; Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Journalist, The Guardian, London Chair

Robby MOOK

Former Campaign Manager, Hillary Clinton Presidential Campaign, Washington, D.C.; Senior Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

 Robby Mook is a nationally recognized campaign manager and strategist, who has built winning organizations at the local, state and national level. The L.A. Times said Mook' success "reflects the changing nature of campaigns, in which swashbuckling strategists are becoming less of an asset than disciplined data nerds who can build a loyal and effective campaign operation the way a seasoned Silicon Valley entrepreneur might."In 2015, he appeared on Fortune magazine’s "40 Under 40" list of the most influential people in business, and was also named to AdAge’s "40 Under 40" list of disruptors and innovators in 2016.
 In 2015-2016, Mook served as Campaign Manager for Hillary Clinton, where he built a $1 billion, 50-state, 3,500 person organization that mobilized more volunteers than any other campaign in history. Mook oversaw marketing, strategic communications, technology, data, fundraising, field organizing, and other critical aspects of campaign operations.
 Under Mook’s leadership, the campaign pioneered new techniques to target media and developed cutting edge technologies for communication and engagement. The campaign created the first-ever technology to target television, digital, and mail communications to individual voters based on their media consumption habits, not just demographics. The campaign also built a ground-breaking mobile app to "gamify" campaign activism and increase digital participation and built new tools to streamline activist fundraising, door-to-door canvassing, and text communication, among other things.
 Mook’s successful campaigns include electing Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe in 2013, the first time in forty years Virginians elected a Governor from the same party as the sitting U.S President and the first Democratic sweep of statewide offices in more than twenty years. Mook served as 2012 Executive Director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, gaining Democratic House seats in every region of the US. Charlie Cook called the DCCC’s success that year "remarkable", "beating the spread" because the DCCC "deftly trained candidates, kept pace with GOP fundraising, and put several previously uncompetitive seats in play." Mook also managed Jeanne Shaheen’s first successful campaign for U.S. Senate when she made history as New Hampshire’s first woman Senator. In the 2008 Democratic presidential primary, Mook served as the State Director in Nevada, Ohio, and Indiana for Hillary Clinton, winning all three states. Obama Campaign Manager David Plouffe praised Mook saying "He beat us three times; his footprint was on our back. He did the best job of anyone over there."
 Mook is a graduate of Columbia University and a native of Sharon, Vermont. He has appeared regularly on NBC’s Today Show and Meet the Press, ABC’s Good Morning America and This Week with George Stephanopoulos, CBS’s This Morning and Face the Nation, as well as cable news networks CNN, MSNBC and Fox News.


Journalist, The Guardian, London

1979-1984 News reporter, The Guardian
1984-1986 Home affairs specialist, The Observer
1986-1987 Chief Feature Writer, London Daily News
1987-1989 Washington columnist, The Scotsman and The New Zealand Dominion
1989-2016 Special Correspondent, The Guardian
2010 Initiated newspaper alliance which published secret material obtained by Wikileaks
2013 Worked on UK end of information about the National Security Agency leaked by Edward Snowden

Political Symposium

show timetable


14:00 - 18:00Professional Programme "Our World's Future"Partner
15:00 - 18:00Generational perspectives on security policyPartner
15:00 - 18:00Professional Programme on Strategies of InfluencePartner


09:00 - 12:00Devil's diplomacyPartner
09:00 - 12:00Professional Programme on Strategies of InfluencePartner
10:00 - 11:30Fireside Talk with Ruth Dreifuss: women and powerPartner
10:00 - 12:00The 2016 US election behind the scenesPlenary
14:00 - 16:30Opening: values and visions of a united EuropePlenary
17:00 - 18:30Acknowledging reality: coming to grips with the international systemPlenary
19:00 - 20:30The USA, the EU and Russia: what changes does the new US administration bring?Plenary


08:30 - 09:30Breakfast Club 03: POLITICO morning briefingPlenary
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 01: War and democracy in Ukraine: what is the future?Breakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 02: From conflicts to collaborative governance: using open data and collective intelligence to achieve public-sector innovationBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 03: May I stay or should I go? The impact of climate change on migrationBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 04: Military cooperation as a means to overcome security challengesBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 05: How to reconcile interests in societies with declining social cohesionBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 06: Alternative facts, provocations and social division: how to deal with populismBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 07: The EU on trial: 60 years of conflict and cooperation in EuropeBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 08: Geoengineering: governance implications, technical options and risksBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 09: Genome editing: governing on the cusp of uncertaintyBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 11: Innovation in a contested environment: from the outside in and the inside outBreakout
12:30 - 13:30Fireside Talk with Talia SassonPartner
12:30 - 14:00Lunch receptionBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 12: Digital Security: Social MediaBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 13: New freedoms, old constraints? Challenges of integrating female refugees in AustriaBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 14: Science-based policy-making in times of post-truth?Breakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 15: Migration and the Arts: Europe's next narrativeBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 16: The Dublin dilemma and the way outBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 17: Democracy in Central and Eastern Europe: catching up or showing the way?Breakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 18: Mission-oriented innovation policy in practiceBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 19: An end to a costly war: alternatives to failed drug policiesBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 20: The Arctic: new narratives for a disputed territoryBreakout
14:00 - 16:30Breakout Session 21: Democracy reloaded: what can we learn from bottom-up democratic innovations?Breakout
17:30 - 19:00Security and liberty in the digital futurePlenary
19:30 - 21:00Green Innovation: urgent & important at oncePlenary


09:00 - 12:30Transformative pathways to sustainability: from perception to changing behaviourPlenary