Recent elections in Afghanistan, Kenya, the Cote D’Ivoire, Nigeria, and Pakistan experienced substantial violence, yet the causes and consequences of election violence remain poorly understood. This project conceptualizes election violence as a sub-type of political violence in which actors employ coercion to affect the electoral process or that arises in the context of electoral competition. A major difficulty in analyzing its causes and consequences is that no comprehensive data source on the incidence of election-related violence exists. To alleviate this problem, the proposed research project will collect data on election violence for all countries with competitive elections for the 1990-2010 period. Once complete, the data will publicly available. A second objective of the project is to develop theoretical arguments on the domestic and international determinants of election violence. Drawing on existing case study research, the argument posits that the competitiveness and quality of elections affect the likelihood of electoral violence. With regard to the international determinants of election violence, the proposal hypothesizes that the presence of international organizations supervising the electoral process can induce shifts in the use of violent intimidation, thus increasing the probability of violent intimidation in the pre-election period. The final objective is to systematically evaluate the theoretical expectations using data collected by the project.
The project will transfer knowledge gained by organizing conference panels, presenting project results at academic conferences, publishing results in peer-reviewed journals, integrating political science students as research assistants, and outreach activities that include meetings with practitioners engaged in mitigating election violence. Information on election-related violent events collected by the project will be available to other researchers and the general public through a user-friendly website.
Fields of science
Call for proposal
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