Election monitoring, voter education and election-related violence (GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report)

Abstract

Query

Is there any analysis on whether election monitoring reduces election-related violence? Does research point to any particular strategies that are more or less effective than others? Is there any analysis that compares the relative value of investing in voter education against investment in election monitoring to reduce election-related violence? Is there any analysis on the kinds of voter education that work best in different environments?

Overview

This report addresses the links between election monitoring, voter education and election-related violence. It finds little generalisable evidence to show that election monitoring or voter education consistently lead to a reduction in levels of election-related violence. On the contrary, some cross-country quantitative studies suggest that in certain contexts, election monitoring may actually promote violence. The report outlines a number of methodological difficulties with establishing a general argument about these links. It also finds contradictory evidence on the question of which election monitoring strategies are most effective, and little analysis of comparative assessments about the relative value voter education versus election monitoring. Finally, the report highlights limited analysis of the degree to which different voter education strategies are more or less appropriate in particular environments.

Citation

Walton, O. Election monitoring, voter education and election-related violence (GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report). Governance and Social Development Resource Centre, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK (2012) 12 pp.

Election monitoring, voter education and election-related violence (GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report)

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