Mathias Hounkpe is the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) country director for Mali. Mathias has more than 20 years of experience promoting elections and good governance in West Africa, including vast experience with electoral processes as a program implementer, researcher, observer, thought leader and educator. Mathias comes (back) to IFES from the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) where he led the Political Governance and Democratic Consolidation program in West Africa for the past eight years after serving as Head of OSIWA Guinea Office for over two years. In the early 2000s, Mathias was an IFES consultant in Benin and later in the early 2010s led IFES programming in Chad. He returns to Mali where, as an ECOWAS elections expert in 2013, he assisted Malian election management bodies in the technical organization of the presidential election that year. Since 2015, he has lectured on topics such as elections and power sharing, good governance and anti-constitutional change of power at the Mali-based West Africa Peace Keeping Training School. Mathias is also one of the authors of the Election Management Bodies in West Africa: A comparative study of the contribution of electoral commissions to the strengthening of democracy. Mathias holds a MPhil in political science from Yale University, where he concentrated on accountability mechanism design in new democracies, and a PhD in mathematical physics from the University of Abomey-Calavi (Benin). In his free time, Mathias enjoys farming and reading, especially about myths and religions.