Exploring New Frontiers in Electoral Integrity: The African Union and ECES gather the international electoral observation community for the #DoP23 Week.


Taking over from the EU, the African Union will host for the first time the forthcoming 2023 Implementation and Convening Committee Meetings for endorsers of the Declaration of Principles (DoP) event. From November 14th to the 17th, the meeting will bring together over 50 international organizations and stakeholders.

As proud signatory of the DoP, ECES will co-organise this meeting with the African Union, under the Pro-Electoral Integrity Project, funded by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Filiberto Ceriani, ECES vice-president, will be joining the meeting to be part of a key discussion on elections observation.

The event's agenda will delve into critical aspects, including effective communication practices in observation work, challenges of the evolving electoral landscape, and the intersection of data protection with electoral integrity. The gathering will facilitate a diverse exchange of ideas and experiences, with the European Parliament, AU Advisory Panel on Democratic Governance, and the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) actively participating.

Day 1 - Setting the Stage:

Embark on a journey of collaboration with welcoming remarks by H.E Ambassador Ayele Lire and illuminating keynotes from Ms. Cristina Castagnoli (European Parliament). This day will set the foundation for discussions on the evolving landscape of credible international election observation.

Day 2 - Navigating Challenges

Dive into focused sessions addressing the evolving challenges of communication practices in observation work and the pivotal role of youth in shaping electoral processes. Participants will explore strategies to overcome barriers and adapt to the ever-changing dynamics of modern elections. The panels will focus on:

  • How can communication practices in observation work evolve for enhanced transparency?
  • What strategies can effectively promote youth participation in the electoral process?
  • How can observer missions navigate challenges presented by evolving electoral landscapes, including disinformation and violence?

Day 3 - High-Level Dialogues

A High-Level Panel featuring experienced Heads of Mission will provide forward-looking insights into optimizing election observation missions. Discussions are expected to emphasize the future global context and the indispensable role of mission leaders in ensuring effective and impartial observations. The panels will focus on:

  • What strategies can observers employ to address challenges in "no-go zones"?
  • How can security measures be enhanced for international and citizen observers?
  • How might the changing nature of conflict impact observer recruitment and terms of conditions?

Through collaborative efforts, the focus will remain on advancing methodologies for credible, transparent, and inclusive elections worldwide.