Democratic thinking

Articles on democracy in the independent online media

December 21, 2005

Mission Democracy

In an old building covered in scaffolding in the backstreets of London’s Southwark district, a staircase leads to the dingy, top-floor offices of Electoral Reform International Services (Eris). The rumble of the trains and the clang of construction-workers’ hammers outside add to the sense that this is an unlikely setting for an organisation which offers advice to democracies all over the world.

But appearances can deceive. In one corner of the office, dozens of coloured pins stuck on a large map of the world denote the countries where Eris – founded in 1992 as an independent and non-political institute, a division of the long-established Electoral Reform Society (ERS) – has provided support to emerging democratic regimes.

Eris’s work aims to support young or emerging democracies around the world. It helps ensure that elections are free and fair, engages in electoral education and assists in good governance. Eris’s projects also educate new voters about electoral law, aid electoral commissions in their work, make sure elections are transparent, and work towards democratic consolidation.

Full article.

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