Cochrane, Marisa Mendez. “Free and Fair?”, Boston College, 2007. http://hdl.handle.net/2345/499.
Throughout the last fifteen years, the phenomenon of International Election Monitoring (IEM) has become increasingly widespread. IEM works to enhance the credibility and transparency of elections; over time, as the outcome of one election (and the success of IEM) conditions the electoral context of future elections, IEM can encourage internal political reform. In a number of states, particularly in Latin America, monitoring efforts have succeeded in steadily improving domestic political conditions and facilitating democratic consolidation. Yet, IEM effectiveness is conditioned not only by the characteristics of the monitoring groups involved, but also by the domestic context of a state. Hence, the unique structural conditions in Sub-Saharan Africa present distinct challenges and opportunities for IEM. This thesis investigates the relationship between IEM and internal political reform in four Sub-Saharan African states. While IEM can encourage the progress of reform through a feedback mechanism, the extent of such reforms is greatly affected not only by domestic structural conditions, but by additional and often overlooked intervening variables.