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Human rights and the precarious condition of electoral democracy

It is widely assumed that human rights and electoral democracy are mutually supportive and inextricably connected. There can be little doubt that the regular holding of free and fair democratic elections is essential for citizens’ enjoyment of human rights. However, we are presently confronted by a range of different challenges to the democratic process within both long-established and transitional electorally democratic countries. With less than a week remaining to what is likely to be the most contested and fraught US presidential election in decades, this webinar assembles a panel of globally renowned experts to consider the precarious condition of electoral democracies in these challenging times.

Tune in on Wednesday 28 October at 14 UTC (15 CET)


Kathleen Cavanaugh

Kathleen-CavanaughKathleen Cavanaugh is a socio-legal scholar, Executive Director of the Pozen Family Center for Human Rights, (University of Chicago) and Senior Lecturer in the College. She holds a PhD in Comparative Politics from the London School of Economics & Political Science (1997) and a LLM (Distinction) from the Queen’s University of Belfast, Northern Ireland (1998). She has held several Visiting Lectureships including: Visiting Research Fellow, Minerva Center for Human Rights, Hebrew University, Israel (2001) and Visiting Lecturer, Department of International Relations, Boston University, Massachusetts, USA (1998), and was awarded a Fellowship at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford (2006-07).

Peter Wolf

peter-wolfPeter Wolf works for International IDEA’s Electoral Processes team. His work focuses on the application of digital technologies in elections, emerging challenges and the sustainable and trusted implementation of ICTs in electoral processes.

Wolf is responsible for International IDEA’s work on ICTs Elections and technology and has authored numerous International IDEA publications, including on biometrics, cybersecurity, certification, electronic voting, open data, open source technology and electoral management. He also contributed to the development of several International IDEA databases, including the database on ICTs, Elections and Technology.

Wolf’s previous experience includes his tenure with the Elections Department of the OSCE Mission to Bosnia and Herzegovina. He has served in various international election observation missions as voter registration and electronic voting expert in France, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, the Philippines and Venezuela. He worked as a consultant and expert in election related ICT projects in Albania, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Iraq, as well as work for private sector technology companies in Austria.

Kayleigh Long

Kayleigh Long is a researcher with Amnesty International. Previously she worked as a journalist, and was based in Myanmar between 2013 and 2018, reporting on human rights and humanitarian issues, as well as the abuse of technology. Her writing work can be found on kayleighelong.com


Andrew Fagan

andrew faganAndrew Fagan is the recently appointed Director of the globally-renowned Human Rights Centre, at the University of Essex. Fagan has been teaching human rights at Essex and in other universities across four different continents since 1998. He has a Doctorate in Political Philosophy, a Masters degree in Political Theory and an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology and Psychology. He is the author of several books, including Human Rights and Cultural Diversity (Edinburgh University Press, 2017) andHuman Rights Atlas (University of California Press, 2010). His recent journal articles have appeared in Human Rights Quarterly, the Nordic Journal of Human Rights and Critical Review of Political and Social Philosophy.

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