Electoral Cycle Approach

Effectiveness and Sustainability of Electoral Assistance: the Electoral Cycle Approach, 2011 (ENG)

Authors: Fabio Bargiacchi, Ricardo Godinho Gomes and Mette Bakken
Contributors: Paul Guerin and Raphaël Pouyé


Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, major donor countries and organisations, namely the United States, the United Nations and the European Union (including its Member States), have contributed to the improvement of electoral processes by providing support to many countries in transition to democracy. By identifying lessons from those experiences and incorporating some of them into improved methods and practices, international electoral assistance has been evolving. The aim of this paper is to shed some light on recent developments among the main players of the international electoral assistance arena, donors and beneficiaries alike; to assess some of the lessons learnt, and to comment on new guiding principles currently under discussion. This paper provides examples of how these new principles can be translated into innovative, programmatic approaches and operational responses with a view of making electoral assistance more effective, sustainable and consistent with the national strategies and objectives of the countries being supported in a given regional context.