Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Why Elections Fail

WZB Distinguished Lecture in Social Sciences by Pippa Norris

Discussants: Ruud Koopmans and Justin Valasek

Moderated by Wolfgang Merkel

The spread of elections to all parts of the globe has been one of the most dramatic developments transforming our world during the twentieth century. Yet, as numerous reports have highlighted, the quality of contemporary contests commonly fails. Contentious elections undermine the legitimacy of elected authorities, political participation, and stability in fragile states. Pippa Norris determines the reasons why elections are undermined by numerous kinds of flaws. She argues that rules preventing political actors from manipulating electoral governance are needed to secure integrity, although at the same time officials also need sufficient resources and capacities to manage elections effectively. Drawing on new evidence, her study determines the most effective types of strategies for strengthening the quality of electoral governance around the world.

Pippa Norris is the McGuire Lecturer in Comparative Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, ARC Laureate Fellow and Professor of Government and International Relations at the University of Sydney, and Director of the Electoral Integrity Project.

Wolfgang Merkel
is Director of the WZB research unit Democracy and Democratization.

Ruud Koopmans is Director of the WZB research unit Migration, Integration, Transnationalization.

Justin Valasek is Research Fellow of the research unit Economics of Change.

Martina Sander-Blanck
veranstaltungen [at]
Registration deadline
Please register until 14.12.2015.

The WZB provides child care during the lecture. Please respond by December 5, to marie.unger [at]

WZB, Reichpietschufer 50, 10785 Berlin
Wednesday, 16 December 2015
Start 5:00 pm
Wolfgang Merkel
Why Elections Fail
Why Elections Fail