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Comparative Assessment of Central Electoral Agencies

Appendix E – Election Machinery and Voter Confidence in the Election Process

There are a growing number of empirical studies, using opinion surveys, that seek to measure how the nature of different electoral authorities and the public's perception of them affects voter turnout, public confidence and satisfaction with the electoral process (Birch 2005). For example, one study in the US found that local election officers who were themselves elected inspired less voter confidence than appointed officials (Burden et al. 2010). In a study of 19 Latin American democracies, Kervel (2009) found that there was greater confidence in EMBs that were perceived to be independent, non-partisan and professional, although the relationship was not very strong.