International Election Monitoring

Democracy International designs, advises, and implements international election monitoring programs for transitional, consolidating, and postconflict elections and conducts assessments of election processes, election systems, and election laws and regulations. DI is an endorsing organization of the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, issued at the United Nations in 2005. The founding principals of DI are leading experts on elections and election monitoring in emerging democracies. Since 1985 we have organized and managed comprehensive international election monitoring programs in more than 50 countries.

We have directed long-term monitoring programs and overseen recruitment, management, and deployment of multinational delegations led and organized by Democracy International, as well as on behalf of the National Democratic Institute, The Carter Center, The Asia Foundation, USAID, the UNDP, the OAS, and other international organizations. We have advised leaders of international election observation delegations, including former U.S. Presidents Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford, former U.S. Vice President Walter Mondale, former U.S. Secretary of State Madeline Albright, former USAID Administrator Brian Atwood, and other world leaders. We have participated in scores of pre- and post-election missions; drafted numerous election-related statements and reports; conducted assessments of election systems, election laws, and election procedures; and coordinated international observers, on behalf of the U.N. and others. We have designed and implemented specialized monitoring programs and innovative techniques focused on voter registration, media access and fairness, campaign finance, election violence, and other election-related issues. We have testified before Congress and the United Nations, published widely on elections and election monitoring in emerging democracies, and have significantly influenced the practice and methodology of international election observation.

Eric Bjornlund is author of Beyond Free and Fair: Monitoring Elections and Building Democracy (Wilson Center Press and Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004), which synthesizes best practices and lessons learned for international and domestic election monitoring. Writes Thomas Carothers of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace,

"Eric Bjornlund has written a book that has been much needed for years—a comprehensive, incisive account of the critically important field of election monitoring in new democracies. Moreover, he has produced a masterful, field-defining work, infused with a probing, judicious spirit of constructive criticism, grounded in a wide range of practical cases, and packed with insights about how to do better."