The popular uprisings of the “Arab spring” have reminded the world how quickly change can come to seemingly firmly entrenched authoritarian regimes, says International IDEA, the Stockholm-based International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance. Decision makers in transitional societies have a chance to lay the foundation for democratic institutions – and in so doing face important choices.
International IDEA’s new policy paper on Electoral Management during Transition highlights some of these choices for policy makers and implementers who organize transitional elections.
How should election management bodies (EMBs) be formed and who should be nominated to them? What powers should EMBs have and what steps may they take to deliver on their mandate? The policy paper sheds some light on these and other relevant issues.
“No two transitions are the same,” said Annette Fath-Lihic, Senior Manager of IDEA’s Electoral Processes Programme, “but IDEA’s mission to supply global comparative knowledge recognizes the value of sharing experiences between emerging democracies – which is exactly what this paper sets out to do.”
The paper contains three detailed case studies of democratic transitions in Chile, Ghana, and Indonesia. Each case study identifies some lessons learned from the administration of transitional elections in these countries.