Nicolas "Nico" Ducoté has dedicated the last 20 years to strengthening civil society and democratic institutions in Argentina. After participating in and leading several NGOs, he co-founded CIPPEC (the Center for the Implementation of Public Policies for Equity and Growth) in 2000 and turned it into Argentina’s premier independent public policy research organization and one of Latin America's top think tanks. His professional contributions have spearheaded national initiatives to improve access to education, healthcare, and justice. Working with the Ministry of Education, Nico helped pass landmark education reform laws in 2005-06 and facilitated state-level education reform in several districts.
He later became involved in politics, serving as Mayor of the Municipality of Pilar, his hometown, with a population of about 500,000 neighbors. As Mayor he reduced infant mortality by more than 30% in three years, he built over 150 km of new roads and sidewalks, and expanded education by opening a new school every 6 months and increasing opportunities for over 5000 children of all educational levels and engaging 2000 adults to return to the class to finish their school degrees.