Thursday, 30 September 2010

Will a clown win the Brazilian elections?

This week presidential elections are taking place in Brazil.
Bloggers and newspapers have been talking about the popularity of a professional clown!

Here are some recommended strating points for finding out more established facts about the election!
IFES has a country guide to the system and results from previous elections.
The BBC has some succinct candidate profiles and links to the latest news stories.
the Tribunal Superior Eleitoral is the official electoral commission of Brazil.It contains information about its purpose, organisation, structure and current activities. This includes reports of recent elections and election monioring in Brazil. Users should note that all information is currently offered in Portuguese only.
Observatorio Electoral Latin America
Provides access to information about parliamentary and presidential elections in Latin American countries. Each section contains a country profile, background information on the electoral system and recent election results. Many of the country profiles also contain historical datasets of election results for downloading plus papers.
Observatoire Politique de l'Amérique latine et des Caraïbes (OPALC) is a major research body of staff, students and researchers based at Sciences Po, France. It organises events, researches and publishes on all aspects of Latin American politics. Its site currently includes discussion (in French) about Brazilian politics and elections.

Some useful blogs covering the elections are:
The Foreign Policy Association has a Brazil blog
OpenDemocracy Net has some recent discussion of Brazilian elections and politics.
The Brazil Portal managed by Woodrow Wilson International center for Scholars has materials from earlier in 2010.
Finally Eleitor is a useful intiative, created by a consortium who include (Global Voices, CDI) which is monitoring the conduct of the elections. It is using web 2,0 services such as Twitter and Google maps to record instances of fraud.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Afghanistan human rights, liberty and elections

According to Foreign Policy magazine the west should be worried about fraud in the forthcoming Afghan elections.
But what do others think.
Here are some organisations which monitor human rights and security in the region.
The Afghanistan Research and Evaluation unit is an independent body based in Kabul. Its website has papers on economic, social and political development. For instance see this recent alternative voices paper on the elections in 2010
The Afghanistan Analysts Network is an independent policy institute. Its website includes timely blogs and full text publications.
Also based in Afghanistan is the Independent Human Rights Commission
Amnesty International has general reports on Afghanistan.
Human Rights Watch
International Crisis Group.
Finally Human Security Gateway aggregates reports on security from many leading research and human rights bodies worldwide so is a good starting point for locating full text papers and reports.

Afghanistan - elections coming soon

Parliamentary elections are due to take place in Afghanistan on the 18th September. As I will be way for a couple of weeks I thought i would offer some starting points on researching them.

The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan has some background information on the electoral system.
Also from the United Nations UNDP Elect site has summaries of news and background information. It includes a particularly good resources section where you will find full text reports and papers (many covering previous elections from 2004 onwards) published by the UN and other major aid and charitable organisations.
The Independent Election Commission is overseeing the events. Its website has a list of candidates, parties and links to electoral laws. Take a look at the press releases section for the latest news.
A number of bodies will be monitoring the elections. Their websites will include analysis of the conduct of the elections and state of democracy in the region.
FEFA - is the fair and Free election Foundation of Afghanistan. Its blog has updates on the situation.
The OSCE will also be deploying a mission.
NDI is also producing an Afghanistan election digest which is covering the work of its own observation mission.

Finally some good news sites.
Afghanistan Votes good news coverage and interviews as well as voter information.
Silobreaker aggregates recent blog, twitter and internet piostings covering the elections. Look for the mappings of news stories on the site.
Similarly Global voices has up to date bloggers discussion.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Labour Party leadership - other sources of research

Here are some useful websites for researching issues relating to the reform of the Labopur Party. Most dont address the election directly, but they are useful background on the type of thinking taking place in the party about its future direction.

Tribune magazine has online articles and discussion

Compass is a membership organisation which was launched in September 2003. It is composed of left of centre political thinkers who are seeking to critically discuss the future of Socialist/ Labour politics and government in the Uk. They include representatives from leading political think tanks Demos, Catalyst and the Fabian Society.

Open Left is a project aimed at renewing British left wing politics which was launched in 2009 by think tank Demos

Next Left is a blog mainatined by the Fabian Society

Renewal is a journal of labour politics which was established in 1993 by the UK Labour Party Central Co-ordinating Committee. It aims to promote dialogue about socialism. 'New Labour', the 'Third way,

Save the Labour Party grassroots group campaigning for more involvement from the rank and file.

Campaign for Labour Democracy
- again seeking more power fro the grassroots.

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Compare the candidates in the 2010 Labour Party elections

Unlock Democracy have just launched the Votematch tool to help you decide who you would support in the 2010 Labour Leadership election.

Some other useful places for finding news and discussion of the qualities of the candidates include newspapers
Many of the mainstream ones have special coverage.
For instance the Guardian has online video interviews, cartoons and stories.
The BBC has blogs and interviews as well as analysis of the candidates.
Channel 4 also has some interesting profiles and comments

Another interesting source of discussion are labour newsites.
Tribune magazine gives free access to some recent articles and comment.
Bloggers for Labour syndicates the latest comment from Twitter and bloggers among the Labour grassroots covering a wide range of topics!
LabourHome also has an interesting discussuion thread on the elections from Labour members and supporters.
Likewise more discussion on Labour List

finally Guido Fawkes for those seeking interesting comment and some cartoon images of the candidates!