DI's Original Survey in Afghanistan Gauges Public Attitudes on Democratic and Electoral Reform

Only 25 percent of Afghans are satisfied with the way democracy works in their country, and nearly 50 percent report dissatisfaction with the fundamental institutions of democratic governance, according to a nationwide public opinion survey Democracy International recently conducted in the country. These results demonstrate the importance of democratic and electoral reform initiatives and show just how critical the 2014 presidential election will be to the further consolidation of Afghan democracy.

Nearly 60 percent of Afghans also reported having no confidence in their political parties, while only 30 percent indicated that they have some or a lot of confidence in the parties, highlighting the continuing challenge Afghan political parties face in their struggle for legitimacy.

DI conducted the nationwide survey in Afghanistan to gauge public attitudes on electoral and democratic reform and citizens’ perceptions of political groups and institutions. In the coming months we will work with local civil society advocates and policy research groups to promote critically important electoral and policy reform using the survey findings to highlight the need and opportunities for such reform. The survey is part of a portfolio of research projects that examine the potential effect of electoral reform on governance in Afghanistan. DI conducted the nationally representative survey in late 2011 by conducting more than 8,000 face-to-face interviews in all 34 provinces.

With support from USAID, DI has been engaged in Afghanistan since 2009 to encourage the country’s transition to democracy. DI currently works to assist an Afghan-led electoral reform process by engaging with a network of organizations to conduct research on and advocacy for electoral and democratic reform.

 Learn more about DI's program in Afghanistan here.