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Better Workers, Better Elections? Electoral Management Body Workforces and Electoral Integrity Worldwide

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Abstract

Understanding the determinants of electoral integrity is vital for the study of democracy and democratisation. Despite this, there have been no cross-national studies on the staff who manage elections, electoral management body (EMB) workforces. This article provides the first macroscopic picture of workforce characteristics, human resource management practices and employee outcomes based on original international surveys of electoral management bodies (EMBs) (n=51) and electoral officials (n=2,029). Drawing from the human resource management literature, a framework is developed to explain why these might interact with EMB performance. Analysis demonstrates them to be highly related. Adding data on human resource management practices and employee outcomes improves explanatory models designed to predict the performance of EMBs. Chiefly, EMBs that enable greater opportunities for employees to be involved in decision making processes perform better. Recruitment practices, job satisfaction and levels of stress are also important. An agenda for future research is therefore launched.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)370-390
JournalInternational Political Science Review
Volume40
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019
Peer-reviewedYes

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