Judith Kelley

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[Cross-posted from New Books in Political ScienceJudith Kelley is the author of Monitoring Democracy: When International Election Observation Works, and Why It Often Fails (Princeton University  Press, 2012). Kelley is associate professor of public policy and political science at Duke University.

Monitoring Democracy, which won the Co-Winner of the 2013 Chadwick F. Alger Prize from the International Studies Association, has numerous theoretical insights and empirical findings to deepen our knowledge of democratic elections. Kelley weaves together new data to answer novel, yet simple questions: Does election monitoring work? And when does it fail? Kelley suggests that governments invite monitors in for a variety of reasons, not all consistent with a goal of holding free and fair elections. And, likewise, monitors – some intergovernmental organizations others non-governmental organizations – have a varied set of constraints on their monitoring and reporting. A critical report on an election can stimulate positive change in some circumstances, but lead to violence and retribution in others. In the second part of the book, Kelley focuses on the quality of elections and correlates between monitoring and sound electoral practices.

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