Centralising Electoral Management | Nessa of Two Evils



Yesterday I read through this paper. It talks about the process of elections from the management perspective, in an effort to improve participation in the process, with split results. When electoral processes are called into question, it usually (and more often than not, baselessly) is associated with voter fraud, but the way an election is held – from planning to execution – can also increase or diminish returns. The conclusions drawn are interesting, and it would be good to see more research in this direction, if governing bodies are truly interested in reform.


(Photo credit goes to Keith Bacongco)

Toby S. James

policy_studiesWould elections be better run if they were organised centrally by the state?  Or should local electoral officials be given more discretion to accommodate local preferences?

This debate has ran most prominently for decades in the US.  But there has been little academic research on the topic.  I’m therefore pleased to see my article on this in volume 38, issue 1 of Policy Studies.

If you have access, the article is here.  If not, feel free to email me and ask for a copy and I’ll happily send it over.

Here’s the abstract:

‘The public administration of elections frequently fails. Variation in the performance of electoral management bodies around the world has been demonstrated, illustrated by delays in the count, inaccurate or incomplete voter registers, or severe queues at polling stations. Centralising the management of the electoral process has often been proposed as a solution. There has been…

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