Consensus Reached on Path Forward for Further Strengthening Elections in Ukraine
In 2019, Ukraine witnessed two historic national elections which resulted in the election of a new president and parliament.
International and domestic observes broadly viewed the election process and environment across both elections as representing a major step forward for electoral democracy in Ukraine. The Central Election Commission (CEC) of Ukraine was commended for what was seen as professional administration of highly complex elections delivered under extreme time-pressure. The CEC’s performance was further recognized by Ukrainian voters as the institution saw a significant rise in public confidence and trust in the Commission from 41 percent in December 2018, to 64 percent in October 2019, following both elections.
In pursuit of further strengthening reforms and building of clear progress in 2019, on November 13-14, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), in partnership with the Central Election Commission (CEC), Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Project Coordinator in Ukraine, and the Council of Europe, organized a national conference titled, “2019 Presidential and Parliamentary Elections: Lessons Learned and Recommendations” in Kyiv, Ukraine.
The event provided a platform for national and international stakeholders to engage in an open and constructive dialogue about the shortcomings and successes of the 2019 presidential and parliamentary elections as well as to discuss recommendations for the further improvement of the electoral process and environment. Participants included representatives of election commissions from all levels, State Register of Voters (SRV), government, political parties, civil society, international organizations and media.
During the gathering, thematic working groups—listed below—relating to various critical aspects of the electoral process were formed to facilitate discussions and recommendations for each.
- Election Administration;
- Voter Registration;
- Pre-election Campaigning by Parties, Candidates; Political Finance; Pre-Election Campaigning;
- Election Observation;
- Voting, Vote Counting and Tabulation;
- Inclusion and Accessibility;
- Cybersecurity and Disinformation in Elections;
- Election Dispute Resolution and Electoral Violations.
The findings of these eight working groups were compiled in the conference report, which can be found by the link.
The lessons learned conference is part of IFES’ broader efforts to support democratic progress in Ukraine, supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), UK aid, and Global Affairs Canada.