Democracy IDEAs is brought to you by the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA). Our podcasts share analyses, data, and insights from experts worldwide to help you understand the challenges of democracy in times of crisis. Find more information to empower you on decision-making processes at www.idea.int
Lowering the voting age – should young people head to the polls?
35:35Calls to enfranchise people as young as sixteen are growing around the world, with some countries already adjusting the vote to align with the national age of employment, taxation, and military service. In Australia, common consensus is lagging but some experts believe it is only a matter of time. From the sidelines of the Australian National University’s APSA conference, Billie Phillips spoke to Professor Lisa Hill about the growing movement.Guest: Professor Lisa Hill, University of Adelaide
A Survival Guide for Democracy… and the Planet: with author and sustainability analyst Owen Gaffney
33:22Owen Gaffney talks to International IDEA's Head of Communications, Alistair Scrutton about climate change, sustainability and the future of our planet, joining a lot of dotted lines between politics, technology and science. Owen Gaffney is a writer, editor, and global sustainability analyst, co-author of the recently-published Earth For All: A Survival Guide for Humanity. He has formerly worked for the Stockholm Resilience Centre and Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, and has advised on BBC and Netflix series including EarthShot (2021) and Our Planet. As well as academic publications, he writes and edits articles, features, and speeches, and has produced for TED, World Economic Forum, and WWF.Recommended reading:Earth For All: A Survival Guide for HumanityBreaking Boundaries: The Science of Our Planet
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Where is democracy heading in Latin America?
35:25The storming of Brazil’s Congress and Supreme Court as well as the deadly anti-government protests in Peru underline the challenges facing democracy in Latin America. Why are the legitimacy of governments being questioned? What is behind the increasing political polarization of the region? And are their grounds anywhere for optimism? International IDEA's Head of Communications and Knowledge Management, Alistair Scrutton , talks to Kevin Casas Zamora, Secretary General of International IDEA.
Peer to Peer: How natural disasters affected the 2010 elections in Haiti
33:11In this episode of Peer-to-Peer, we speak with David Towriss and Atsuko Hirakawa to learn more about compounding crises, and the effect of a Richter Scale-7 earthquake on an already vulnerable Haiti, Hurricane Tomas, and a cholera outbreak in Haiti and their postponed elections in 2010. This conversation is based on International IDEA’s case study but also Atsuko’s experience and knowledge on how Haiti’s election administrators implemented their 2016 elections after Hurricane Matthew. Guests: David Towriss was previously a Research Assistant in the Electoral Processes Team at International IDEA and is currently an Associate Programme Officer at the Democracy Assessment Unit. Atsuko Hirakawa is a Programme Officer at the Democracy Assessment Unit with previous experience in governance and electoral assistance, having worked in Port-au-Prince as a technical specialist for UNDP. Hosts: Heidi Park and Erik Asplund Background Reading: The Impact of Natural Hazards on Haiti’s 2010 Presidential and Legislative Elections Democracy Tracker – Haiti Global State of Democracy Report 2022: Forging Social Contracts in a Time of Discontent How hurricanes threaten U.S. elections and why more flexible voting is needed Hurricane Matthew forces postponement of Haiti presidential elections The Impact of Natural Hazards on Elections
Peer-to-Peer: The impact of cyclones on Mozambique elections
44:26In this episode of Peer-to-Peer, we speak to Miguel de Brito and Domingos de Rosaria about cyclones Idai and Kenneth and their impact on Mozambique’s 2019 Presidential, Legislative and Provincial elections. This was the first time in recorded history that two strong tropical cyclones hit Mozambique during the same season. This conversation is based on International IDEA’s case study on how the two cyclones devastated the country and specifically how it impacted the electoral process, as well as a discussion on how the electoral commission can be better prepared for the upcoming 2024 elections. Guests: Miguel de Brito has been International IDEA’s Head of Programme for Mozambique since 2019 and has 20 years of experience in the field of political governance. Domingos de Rosaria is a senior lecturer at the Eduardo Mondlane University, and a senior researcher at the Centro de Estudos Urbanos de Moçambique. HOSTS: Heidi Park and Erik Asplund GUESTS: Miguel de Brito and Domingos de Rosaria
What has been the state of global democracy in 2022?
18:54International IDEA’s Global State of Democracy 2022 Report has been published. Report Editor and International IDEA's Head of Democracy Assessment, Seema Shah, provides an overview of the findings. Democracy is in decline around the world, undermined by problems ranging from restrictions on freedom of expression to distrust in the legitimacy of elections. This decline comes as elected leaders face unprecedented challenges from Russia’s war in Ukraine, cost of living crises, a looming global recession and climate change. But Seema also finds some grounds for optimism.
Peer-to-Peer: The impact of wildfires on US elections
23:00In our first episode of the new season of Peer-to-Peer, we speak with Sarah Birch and Jeff Fischer to learn more about the effect of wildfires on elections in California. The conversation is based on an International IDEA case study that focuses on the impact of wildfires on the 2016 and 2018 electoral cycles but also on the steps taken by election administrators to protecting elections. The discussion also centres on the increased vulnerability of the United States and its election cycles to climate change effects. Guests: Sarah Birch is a professor of Political Science at King’s College London, Jeff Fischer is a Senior Fellow at Georgetown University’s Center for Democracy and Civil Society as well as a consultant on election administration. Hosts: Heidi Park and Erik Asplund Background reading: Wildfires and Elections in California – Case Study Wildfires, Hurricanes, Floods and Earthquakes: How Elections are Impacted by Natural Hazards The Impact of Natural Hazards on Elections How hurricanes threaten U.S. elections and why more flexible voting is needed
Peer-to-Peer Trailer: The impact of natural disasters on elections
6:08This season, International IDEA will explore the effects of climate change in the form of extreme weather events, as well as other natural hazards, that cause both slow and rapid onset disasters, on the implementation of elections. Natural hazards can cause elections to be postponed, impact electoral operations, affect campaigns, and voter turnout. With evidence that climate change may cause extreme weather events to become more intense and common, election practitioners must begin to prepare contingency plans and train staff on implementing elections after a disaster. Through interviews with academics and practitioners, we will explore different cases where a country was affected by a natural hazard with an election in the horizon that needed to be implemented. Throughout this season, we will explore and consider various questions on how to protect the integrity of elections and continuation of the democratic process after a crisis. What are the common challenges faced by electoral management bodies after the wake of a disaster? How did practitioners adapt to ensure that citizens could vote safely? What type of legal measures and special voting arrangements were put into place to ensure that those who were displaced could send in their ballots? What type of assistance is necessary for protecting the integrity of elections before, during and after a crisis? To find more information, please visit our page on natural hazards and elections that includes our dashboard and longer case studies: https://www.idea.int/news-media/multimedia-reports/impact-natural-hazards-elections As well as a feature article that investigates the different ways natural hazards are impacting elections: https://www.idea.int/news-media/news/wildfires-hurricanes-floods-and-earthquakes-how-elections-are-impacted-natural
Battling climate change with the rule of law
36:02Across Africa, civil society is using the courts to protect the environment from governments and companies. It is part of a wider campaign for climate justice in the continent that has brought together both elder and younger generations as well as social media. Lawyer and activist Lindlyn Moma has first-hand experience of the transformation happening on the ground.Guest: Lindlyn Moma, Human Rights Lawyer and Environmental Activist