Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Mali elections - keep up to date

Elections took place in Mali recently.

The UN reported on turnout.

APO African Press organisation has some reports of results.

IFES has data which compares with other lections plus background information on the electoral system.

for information on the conduct of the elections and the state of democracy see NDI which also has good links to other news reports.

The EU official election observation mission


African Union resources on Mali

EISA South Africa assessment of recent elections and links to results.

see also some earlier recomendations from this blog

Friday, 6 December 2013

Croatia - same sex marriage poll - does it display the rotten heart of a nation?

This week Croatians took part in a national referendum to debate whether same sex marriage should be banned under the constitution.

the Guardian comment is free described the results as exposing the rotten heart of Europe

See the question and results on the IFES website which also has other electoral materials from the region

The official website of the electoral authority has a full map of the results and a breakdown.

Here are some more resources. Materials are mostly in Croatian so apologies if they are not exact as I have had to rely on others.
Croatian Bishops Conference supported the referendum
Most media did not

Jutarnji list, one of the country's largest newspapers, announced it would openly endorse the campaign against the amendment.

Tabloid newspaper coverage printed a swastika.to summarise their thoughts.

On the day of the referendum the initiative decided to forbid access to their headquarters to the journalists belonging to a group of selected media whom the initative accused of bias, unprofessionalism and plagiarism. Among these were the Croatian Radiotelevision, the public broadcasting company, the most visited Croatian Internet portals Index.hr, Net.hr and T-portal, as well as all of the publications by Europapress Holding and Novi list. the Croatian Journalists' Association invited all of the media to boycott the coverage of initiative on the referendum day, .


Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Honduras elections - what was the outcome were they fair?

General elections were held in Honduras on November 24, 2013. Voters went to the polls to elect a new President of Honduras to serve a four-year term starting January 27, 2014; 128 members to serve four-year terms in the National Congress; 298 Mayors and vice-mayors
The official results have been posted on the
Tribunal Supremo Electoral Honduras. There are links to 2013 data on the left.
Basic facts about the electoral system and past elections are on the IFES website.

However some human rights organisations have raised concerns about the state of human rights in the region.

Amnesty International comment.
Human Rights Watch
OAS - has some coverage of earlier human rights issues.
The Center for Constitutional Rights has also issued some statements about the conduct of the elections.
The Carter Center has been observing the elections and has issued a statement.
US State Department report on human rights in Honduras 2012
National Popular Resistance Front or National People's Resistance Front (Spanish: Frente Nacional de Resistencia Popular, FNRP ( a wide coalition of Honduran grassroots organisations and political parties and movements that aims to restore elected President Manuel Zelaya ) also has articles about human rights concerns on the website.
Past reports and election censuses can also be downloaded from the NDI site which has worked on projects on the region.

Newspaper coverage of the elections - including stories, analysis and polls can be viewed onlineon these websites.

Economist Americas Blog.
New York Times
La Prensa (Honduras) Spanish.
El Heraldo- Honduras.
La Tribuna Honduras

Monday, 18 November 2013

Chile presidential elections - try these recommended websites.

on the 17th Chilean presidential elections took place.
Find out more about the results and the second round of voting using these resources.

IFES has a good basic guide to the electoral system.
Another good basic guide is the Council of the Americas briefing.
The Chilean government has official information on timing for voters. (Spanish)
It also has a historic election results server which covers the period from 1989-2012.
Plus more detailed information on the 2013 process on its current website.

News/ blogs coverage
The Washington Post blog monkey cage has comment.
It includes analysis from LSE PHD candidate Kenneth Bunker. More can be viewed on his twitter account.
Economist coverage
Guardian coverage

Chilean newspaper coverage.

Nacio - state owned newspaper.
El Mercurio
La Segunda
Radio UChile coverage.

Monday, 4 November 2013

Tajikistan presidential elections find out more

Here are our recommended resources for information.

IFES election guide has facts and figures on turn out in recent elections and the electoral system.
For recent news accounts of the conduct of the campaigns see
National news agency of Tajikistan
EIN News - reported that the elections lacked genuine debate
Radio Free liberty (note this organisation has connections with the USA)
Euraasia net
Global Voices online has stories from bloggers

Concerns have been raised by human rights organisations.
In its 2013 report Freedom House found the state of freedom of the press to be unfree- The full report can be consulted on its website.
Human Rights watch reports.
Amnesty International
International Crisis group

ETajikistan has links to reports from human rights organisations.
National Movement of Tajikstan is a human rights organisation which is campaigning for fair and free elections in 2013.
The OSCE is monitoring the election on the 6th and has preliminary reports on its website

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Luxembourg elections- find out what is going on.

Here are our recommended links for the snap elections which took place in Luxembourg this week
The IFES election guide has some good data on voting and turnout levels from the most recent and some older elections.
European Elections Monitor has a god brief summary of the issues at stake. The OSCE is monitoring the elections and has produced a preliminary report which also puts them in context.
The official duchy website has news, background information and official results from the most recent and historic information
The Wort.lu newspaper has a special dossier with news, analysis polls and interviews..
Useful blog coverage in English from Luxemborg votes 2013 and the LSE europpblog

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Azerbaijan elections - what are the human rights issues?

Presidential elections are due to be held in Azerbaijan on 9th October.
for official information on candidates and procedures see the

However a number of human rights commentators have raised concerns 
of particular value is the The Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety (IRFS)  a local Azerbaijani NGO which has reports and discussion on censorship and criticism of attacks on the press.

Association for Civil Society Development in Azerbaijan. also has a very useful website discussing the development of civil society in Azerbaijan it also has news stories.
For information on the assessment of election observers see OSCE  which has reports on current and past missions.

see news stories and reports on 
 finally useful for academic analysis of the region is

The Caucasus Analytical Digest (CAD)  a monthly internet publication jointly produced by the Caucasus Research Resource Centers, the Research Centre for East European Studies at the University of Bremen, the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies of the George Washington University, the Resource Security Institute in Washington, DC and the Center for Security Studies (CSS) at ETH Zurich with support from the German Association for East European Studies (DGO). Good coverage of political and economic events. Archived issues free online.

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Austrian elections -see our recommended research resources

Elections took place in Austria on the 29th september. Here are some places where you can find more information.

IFES has a useful election guide with facts and figures on turnout and results.
Official results can be viewed on the website of the Federal Ministry of the Interior
The Austrian National Election study website conducts research into voting behaviour and attitudes. Its website has information and a section where data can be downloaded.

European Elections Monitor has some analysis this covers all elections from 2002 onwards
The monkey cage blog has a pre elections report from 3 Austrian political scientists
Sylvia Kritzinger, Michael Lewis-Beck, and Eva Zeglovits, authors of The Austrian Voter.

Austrian newspaper coverage
Der Standard includes blogs, analysis, polls.
Die Presse

Sources of polls

Monday, 23 September 2013

German elections - see our recommended sites.

 German citizens went to the polls at the weekend
here are some recommended links for keeping up to date
The BBC has a good introductory guide for beginners to German elections, candidates and the electoral system.
The American Institute for Contemporary German Studies has some basic introduction and discussion.

Official results can be obtained from the Federal returning office
The site also has  legislation and laws relating to the elections.

News services.
Yahoo Germany has up to date news stories and analysis
Tagesschau - news service produced on behalf of on behalf of the German public-service television network ARD.
BR news. Bayerischer Rundfunk [Bavarian Broadcasting]
Speigel Coverage 
Die Welt coverage

Financial Times 
The Economist blog encourages you to build your own coalition.
Wall Street journal has an interactive stream with updates.

Robert Schuman European Elections Monitor
German Federal Agency for Civic Education - the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung has a good site with information and news.  It includes a wahl o mat - an example of an interactive tool designed to inform the electorate who to decide who to vote for
Forschungsgruppe Wahlen e.V. wahl analysis
Landeszentrale für politische Bildung Baden-Württemberg

ZDF politbarometer polls
ARD polls

Further links
Bundesarbeitsgemeinschaft Politische Bildung has developed an information website which also hasa great set of links to explore.

Friday, 6 September 2013

Australia elections how is social media being used?

How is twitter being used in the Australian elections? a good starting point is the University of Melbourne website which has a tour of the twitter sphere

The Canberra Times also has a social media ratings section where it compares followers for Abbott and Rudd on Facebook, Twitter and Youtube.

The Yahoo and News 7 site is also mapping facebook mentions
Brand watch has an interesting report on social media and elections in Australia
Also informative is this recent report.
.Brisbane:ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation 
 The Australian Electoral Commission also has some research on social media and political participation. see this example.
Find further examples by following the links on Australian Policy online which is good at reporting recent research from Australian universities and major research centres.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Australian elections follow the polls

These recommended sources are useful for getting up to date polls
Many newspapers and news services have good poll sections. examples of note include:
ABC Opinion polls
Australian polling center- from the Australian newspaper

Polling businesses include:

Galaxy research
Roy Morgan research
Essential research

Australian elections 2013- meet the candidates using our recommended resources!

The Australian Electoral Commission has a list of registered political parties.
Australian Labor party campaign 2013 - Kevin Rudd twitter

Liberal party Tony Abbott twitter
National Party
Green party

Election leaflets - see examples on a society maintained by the Open Australia foundation.
Campaign Ads ( via University of Melbourne website)

Coming soon Australia elections - try these recommended starting points

Elections are due to take place in Australia very soon.
here are our starting points for keeping up to date!

Government websites.

The Australian Electoral Commission has a detailed website for the 2013 elections.
it includes lists of candidates
timetables, factsheets, legislation and more.
The Electoral Council of Australia explains the electoral system clearly. It also has research on the effectiveness and operation.

these services include polls, news stories, interviews and discussion from the campaigns.

Canberra Times
ABC News
Global Mail - has a powerhouse section which has analysis of data and some interactive games.
Australian Times
Sydney Morning Herald
Yahoo and 7 news coverage
YouTube: Australia votes channel - note includes satire and manifesto campaigns

Huffington Post

Academic commentary.
The Conversation independent news service which includes comment from academic sources. based in Australia.
Australian Policy and History Network commentary linking historical events with current circumstances
Election watch 2013 - University of Melbourne
Includes campaign ads, cartoons and satire

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Madagascar elections 2013- what is going on?

madasgscar should have been holding elections this week. but concerns have been raised.
All.Africa.com reported concerns about candidates being barred.

Background on the electoral structure can be found on the IFES website
Also on the EISA South Africa which has past election results. Another quick reference source for election results from the past is the African elections database
The official Interior ministry has texts in french relating to electoral laws and regulations.
CENI - the Electoral Commission  also has extensive section on its website relating to electoral law

for discussions of the current political problems see coverage from bloggers.
on Global voices online

In January 2013 Chatham House said it was time for the nation to make a fresh start. read their analysis.
Also in January 2013 the Economist commented that the old guard would not give up.
Newspaper coverage can be found in
Le Monde which referred to the elections as being under threat.
All.Africa.com - which is good at aggregating news stories from Africa.
Another good source for elections observation and assessment of the state of democracy is Pacte. This project is supported by the EU to encourage credible elections. It includes information on its work.
The African Union also has some press releases relating to its observations, work on elections
Finally background information on the state of democracy in the region can be found on good geenral sites covering human rights:
try the Africa media barometer- which monitors press freedom
Afrobarometer public attitude surveys.
Freedom House - country report
Ibrahim Index of African governance - see how Madagascar ranks in relation to freedom in other African nations.
Amnesty International

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Mali elections - recommended websites

Presidential elections have been taking place in Mali.
The IFES guide has basic facts on the electoral system and previous elections
The Mali government have a website in French which has details about the elections and some results from the first round of voting.
For news services covering the elections try:
The Guardian newspaper coverage.
Al-Jazeera had an infographic on the first round at the end of July. It also has timelines and other articles.
All- Africa.com - aggregating news stories from Africa has a selection of recent news stories.
Journal du Mali (French language news)
Maliweb.net  (French language news)

For reports from election observers on the conduct of the elections try:
EU Election Observation mission.
ECOWAS observations of the first round
Mali actualities has information and reports in French from local grassroots observer groups such as APEM 
also the excellent Mali Vote website-created by Oneworld  to support the work of the NGO Network for the Electoral Process in Mali (APEM in French) It has observation reports, statistical data on turnout and maps recording the conduct.

Background information and reports on democratization and conduct compiled by NDI
There are also polls of citizens - which cover issues such as perceptions of corruption and the state of democracy on the Afrobarometer website

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Zimbabwe elections - fair or unfair? What does research say?

 A statement made by William Hague criticised the conduct of the recent Zimbabwe elections. John  Kerry US secretary of State also expressed concerns.
However other observers have welcomed the outcome as valid.

The African Union praised the elections.
You can view statements from the EU mission on their website 
The Commonwealth currently has statements on past elections.
Local human rights groups who observed the situation from the ground include:
The Zimbabwe Election Support Network- their website has a map of reported incidents. Plus background information on democratization programmes.
Zimbabwe Democracy Institute - has press releases on the election plus links to recent research on democracy and politics. 
Sokwanele - Zimbabwe election watch is mourning the loss of hope
Womens Coalition of Zimbabwe provides a comment from the field on this blog.
NDI - has statements and reports on the political conditions 

 News services- include
Fair and free elections - is tracking news reports on events and reaction.
BBC coverage
Newsday - Zimbabwe
Independent - Zimbabwe

The following organisations report on human rights and the state of democracy in the region
Crisis in Zimbabwe coalition. civil society network of over 72 organisations. 
International Crisis group
Amnesty International 
Human Rights Watch 
Council on Foreign relations has some papers including comment on the impact of the elections on relations with South Africa.
finally the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has background on the laws

Monday, 29 July 2013

Cambodia elections - were they fair?

According to CNN - opposition leaders have rejected the results of the latest elections in Cambodia
Here are some recomended resources analysing the situation.
The official website of the National Election committee has news, results and background on the electoral system in English.

Human Rights watch has argued that systematic problems have undermined the elections.
Amnesty International has discussed freedom of expression.
Transparency international Cambodia has been observing the elections. Its website has discussion of corruption in the area.
The Asian Network for Free Elections- has also expressed its concerns. Its website has news, statements and other reports on current and past elections.
The Committee for fair and free elections in Cambodia also has resources - at present the English language site seems to be down. but it usually has reports on the state of democracy
The Cambodia center for independent media has reports on the state of the media in the run up to the elections.
NDI has details of its work in strengthening democracy in the region.
East Asia Forum has some assessments from academics prior to the elections.
Friedrich boll siftung - has a special file with academic papers proving background
A useful daily summary of events can be found on the Cambodia elections 2013 blog
another useful news site is the Cambodia Information center

Monday, 22 July 2013

Japan elections - why do they matter?

This weekend Japanese elections took place. for background information on the electroal system and previous results see the IPU website. also useful is this guide from UC Irvine which directs users to sources of data on past elections

The Japan Real Time Blog (from the Wall Street Journal) - posed the question of why they matter. Read the answer and further discussion on the blog
The University of Warwick also has some discussion
other useful think tanks which discuss and have full text papers on Japanese politics include:
East Asia Forum - from National Bureau of Economic Research
ISN Zurich has articles on Japanese politics and security
CSIS - Japan research
Heritage Foundation.
Rand research
Council on Foreign relationsBrookings Institution Japan research
The Harvard Business school has a Japan research center which focusses on economic issues.
Pew Research Center has some recent polls on attitudes in Japan.

Japanese press discussion of the same issues can be found on
Real Time Politics.jp
Yomiuri Shimbun:
Asahi Shimbun

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Albanian elections- what are the main issues?

This week Albanians went to the polls

Albania Election Update
was a  service of the Government of Albania with  Albania’s Central Election Commission (CEC) . It has official press releases and news The CEC website also has laws and full text reports.

The BBC reported allegations of vote rigging

Osce monitored the elections and produced an initial assessment.

GDEM has also produced some pre-election assessments.

NDI website has a series of election watches which analyse events
Albanian elections observatory briefings more can be found on the website of the Hellenic Foundation

The Monkey cage blog has reports and analysis from researchers

Tirana Centre for Excellence in Journalism created a special area on its website to encourage independent high quality reporting. It includes news updates

News coverage
from Balkan insight

Transitions Online (some items for subscribers only)

Tirana Times

For background information on the state of democracy in the region see:

Freedom House has reports of the state of democracy in the region

IREX has produced a media sustainability index of  Albania which measures the quality of journalism, legal freedoms of the press

The state of Albanian Democracy at the eve of 2013 General elections- Instituti i Studimeve Ndërkombëtare

Thursday, 20 June 2013

Iranian elections - see our recommended research resources

In the news this week the Iranian presidential elections.
For some good starting points try these recommended research resources.

IFES has basic information on the electoral system and past elections.
They also have a selection of reports on the electoral system and state of democracy in iran which they have published in recent years.

Official news from the Iranian government can be found on the Islamic republic news service which has an English language version.

For news coverage try.
BBC which as a good FAQ  
Washington Post
New York Times

also interesting wikipedia has links to election debates and transcripts.Note that as these are ioffered in Arabic only we have not been able to verify content so evaluate before use.

for news services and blogs from Iran try

Iran election watch Independent journalsits operating in and outside Iran
Iran's view
Al-Monitor Iran pulse

Global voices online - blogs including some from Iran

Commentary from think tanks on the elections. The following have briefings and useful background reports.
Wilson Center election update and news.
Council on Foreign relations

Brookings Institution. Chatham House RUSI
For more information on the winner see
His official website rouhani website

al Jazeera collected news.

Finally an excellent site for background information on previous Iran elections is the Iran Electoral Archive from the The Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna an Italian public university
This covers all aspects of the electoral process from 1967 onwards providing free access to documents, legislation and more in English and Persian.It also includes some 2013 resources.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Equatorial-Guinea elections - what are the human rights issues?

Equatorial-Guinea is due to hold elections on 26th May 2013. See the IFES guide for basic facts on the forthcoming and recent elections.
Get the government perspective on their official website. This includes a section on election news.
they also have a blog which has some coverage of events.

However commentators have raised issues about the state of human rights and civil liberties in the region- try these links to get the facts.

Reporters Without Frontiers has accounts of opposition social media and websites being blocked
All Africa.com also has a good selection of recent news stories which focus on this and other related human rights issues.
Amnesty International has expressed concerns about the treatment of opposition politicians. See also their annual report for a more general discussion of wider conditions.
Human Rights Watch also has coverage in its annual report plus more recent statements.
Freedom House has an annual ranking of freedom in the world. See its latest entry
Genocude Watch reports on Equatorial Guinea.
US Department of State 2012 country report on human rights practices.

finally an excellent resource is EG Justice Justice for Guinea. It has a section on its website called election concerns.

Monday, 13 May 2013

Pakistan elections - check out our recommended research starting points

This wek voters in Pakistan went to the polls.
here are some recommended sites for beginning academic research

The Pakistan Election Commission has official press releases, lists of candiates and results on its website. Also accessible are election notices, regulations and rules
it also worked with the government of Pakistan on creating the about MyVote.pk to provide the electorate with information on where and how to vote. Also associated with this was the Jaag Pakistan website which aimed to encourage reporting of electoral fraud and violence. it uses crowd sourced technology. View the online map for reported instances.

News Services
The BBC has a summary of key events and players as well as current news stories.
The Guardian has a good introductory guide as well as the latest news stories.
Dawn - has a special feature with party profiles and detailed analysis.
Pakistan elections com has news and results.It also has an interactive map of results
Bashaoor Pakistan also has updated news from Pakistan
PTV has a large election 2013 website with results and analysis from Pakistan TV. You can also download an election app. and get access to past election statistics.
Newsweek pakistan coverage

Monitoring reports
here are some resources for discussion on the conduct of the elections and state of democracy innthe region.
A recent poll by the Pew Center found that muslims are sceptical about the state of democracy

European Union observation reports. from the reports of the Observer mission.
NDI has a preliminary statement from observers.
Global voices online has discussion from bloggers.
Pakvotes has been using social media to help voters. it provides free access to a number of monitorign reports from human rights agencies.
Another site using social media to assess conduct is pakvoter which has both twitter and facebook accounts.

The Free and fair elections network is also a good source of reports on political violence, corruption and the state of democracy
and there was a gender election monitoring misison deployed from Gender Concerns International

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Malaysia elections - were they fair?

At the beginning of May elections took place in Malaysia.
Al- Jazeera raised the question could they be fair?
Here are our recommended research links.

Official Election Commission Of Malaysia Website (Malay) has results and information about the electoral system
It includes links to a special election dashboard. and an official  election 2013 portal

the main political party sites with their manifestoes are;
Barisan Nasional (English)

Pakatan Rakyat
  News coverage
Good English language sources which contauin anlysis, reults and commentary on candidates are
The Star Online.
ABC News from Australia has a gallery of images and commentary. Guardian UK Al-Jazeera Channel news Asia has a special section Malaysia decides with twitter, video and text coverage.   New Mandala has some coverage . It was established in June 2006 by Dr Andrew Walker and Dr Nicholas Farrelly.  Hosted by the Australian National University (ANU) College of Asia and the Pacific, it provides anecdote, analysis and new perspectives on mainland Southeast Asia     civil/ human rights organisations commenting on the elections include: Asian Network for Free elections (ANFREL) MAFREL Malaysians for Free Elections - see their Facebook comments. KOMAS - Malaysian human rights organisation Bersih 2.0 see also Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch for general background