Mark Whitehead 06 June 2019

Study sets out how best to empower electoral officials

Organisations running elections do better when they tackle stress among their employees, according to academics.

Findings from what is claimed to be the first international survey of its kind say there is a link between the workforce of electoral management bodies and the quality of the delivery elections.

The authors say their research in International Political Science Review comes after a series of elections from Indonesia to the UK had problems with the management of elections in 2019.

They make a series of recommendations for improving independence, building capacity, addressing gender equality, tackling employee stress and giving a greater voice for election staff.

Co-author Dr James, head of the University of East Anglia’s department of political, social and international studies, said: 'We know that factors such as staffing, technology and organisational design and capacity impact on schools and hospitals, so we should expect the same to hold true of elections, too.

'Elections are the public service whose outcomes shape all other public policies and the provision of public services, so the quality of delivery is paramount to the public having confidence in the electoral process and democratic consolidation.'

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