Mongolia Focus 2021 in Review

By Julian Dierkes

In summer of 2021, we celebrated the 10th anniversary of our blog, we’re now into the 11th year of providing analyses of contemporary development, always non-partisan, always for free, rooted in our academic research on Mongolia.

2021 was another election year and we’ve learned over the past decade that international interest in Mongolia goes up during election years, so we have also actively catered to that interest by writing more about the 2021 presidential election. This is especially true as international interest generally has waned from the heydays of the mining boom.

Overall, trends in readership remain relatively steady from previous (election) years.


Just under 15,000 readers generated over 36,000 pageviews.

Readers were located in the following countries:

  • U.S. 25.6%
  • Mongolia 22.3%
  • Canada 8.6
  • Germany 5.6%
  • UK 4.6%
  • Australia 3.2%
  • China 2.7%
  • Russia 1.7%
  • India 1.6%
  • Sweden 1.6%

There are actually some shifts in the readers’ location from last year to note. Japan and South Korea have dropped out of the top 10. I have no obvious explanation for this, nor for the arrival of Sweden on the top 10 list, other than that the absolute numbers at the bottom of the listing are small, so small shifts move countries around on this list. Sweden’s percentage share of readers is thus based on a readership of just over 200 individuals. Maybe all these readers were at the Swedish MFA, following up on last year’s somewhat mysterious “Friends of Democracy” announcement?

Russia is also new on the top 10. Hm… Since the strategic partnership was announced in 2019, not sure why there would be relatively more interest from Russia this year. Perhaps the 100-year anniversary of diplomatic relations that has been celebrated this year?

Interest from China is interesting of course. I suppose that means that we have not written anything to offed the Chinese regime and its censors enough to be blocked (yes, need to work on that), but it also means that interest remains high, though given the number of internet users in China, relatively low compared to, say, the U.S. But the fact that we write (mostly) in English obviously has something to do with that level of readers’ interest.

The cumulative total of readers is now up to just shy of 165,000 with a total of over 450,000 page views in total. I guess we’ll get to the half million page view mark in 2023!


Compared to last year, I note that none of this year’s posts was read more than 500 times. With a similar total number of posts (63 in 2021 compared to 2020’s 61), we had fewer posts that stood out for spikes in readership rather more steady interest, or so it appears.

The three most-read posts that we wrote in 2021 were:

Many thanks to Max and Johann (both with the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation) for their contributions!

Obviously, posts written later in the year never have much of a chance in this ranking as readers will continue to return to them after the initial posting.

There are also a number of posts that continue to attract a lot of readers long after we’ve published them.

Of these, the top three are:

The first two are actually our most-read posts overall as well with more than 9,000 readers between the two of them.

I guess I need to up my game on pop culture topics, at least if maximization of readership on individual posts were the game here.

About Julian Dierkes

Julian Dierkes is a sociologist by training (PhD Princeton Univ) and a Mongolist by choice and passion since around 2005. He teaches in the Master of Public Policy and Global Affairs at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. He toots
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