Publication | Report/Paper

International Election Observation, Honduras, November 21-27 2001: Observation Guide

Scope of Observation

The first objective of neutral observation is to monitor election activities from a positive perspective. With this view as a starting point, the second objective is to identify circumstances, issues or irregular practices that jeopardize or hinder the legal conduct of the election. This is particularly important if irregularities appear to be a deliberate pervasive or part of an organized scheme.

In fulfilling these key objectives, it is also important to consider that the elections do not begin and end with the conduct of the poll on elections day. To evaluate the election, therefore, observers should familiarize themselves with the political context in which the elections are taking place, the legal framework underpinning the elections, and the preelection and campaign environments.

Attempts to ascertain the how the media is handling the coverage of the process and whether campaign coverage appears to be open and fair. Determine what civic education efforts appear to have been made and how well citizens appear to be motivated. As you help broaden your understanding of the election process as a whole, and assist you in assessing you findings in a meaningful context.

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