Election Monitoring

Conversation Details

Dates of conversation: 
Wednesday, January 21, 2009 to Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Conversation type: 
Type of tactical goal: 

Summary available

Election monitoring is a powerful tool in promoting democracy, political rights and good governance. Participants in this dialogue discussed the principles behind this tactic, the risks and challenges involved, and the techniques being used by practitioners to overcome these challenges. 


The discussion about elections monitoring began with a discussion about why election monitoring is important. Election monitoring can provide legitimacy for the international community as well as to provide a sense of trust in the country or community where the elections are being held. It can also be an avenue to help gain civil rights to repressed minorities.

Challenges that were discussed include the possibility of legitimizing a dictator with election results.  Also discussed was the need to increase the time of election monitoring, including the run up to elections and afterwards, to make sure all rules are followed.

The role of international and domestic observers was discussed, including what different roles international and domestic observers can play, what expertise they can provide and how these can be integrated.

Tactics that were suggested included using cell phones, both with trained observers as well as citizens to communicate transgressions during voting on election days.

Also suggested was the coordination of a large number of NGOs to observe different parts of the election, which could be presented with a united front for greater legitimacy. Also, the use of Declaration of Principles and Code of Conduct for International Election Observation guidelines to help be effective was suggested.

There was agreement about the need both for the local population to be involved in any election monitoring, as well as the need for countries to have independent election boards to ensure impartiality.

Tactical mapping was also brought up as a useful tool when determining an effective strategy for election monitoring.

Conversation Leaders

pberg's picture
Patrick Berg
Transparency International
patmerloe's picture
Pat Merloe
National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI)
kwami's picture
Kwami Ahiabenu
International Institute for ICT Journalism- penplusbytes
roddybrett's picture
Roddy Brett
Northern Arizona University/FLACSO Guatemala
Eka Siradze-Delaunay's picture
Ecaterine Siradze-Delaunay
International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy - ISFED
measton's picture
Matt Easton
Human Rights First
Evans Wafula's picture
Evans Wafula
Africa Interactive
Discussion topicsort descending Replies Last post
Closed topic Election Monitoring (Page: 1, 2) 71
by kantin
Wed, 06/27/2012 - 9:07pm