Electoral Technical Assistance
Electoral technical assistance activities will be carried out in the following areas: organizational and technological development of electoral institutions; modernization and improvement of civil registries; reform of electoral systems; and studies and research.
To modernize democratic institutions, the UPD has responded to the invitations of member states to provide assistance in modernizing technical electoral systems including providing support for their on-going modernization efforts with their legislatures, electoral systems and civil registries. Among the requests that are most frequently received are activities to upgrade the computerization of voting records and to computerize the records of vital statistics that are contained in the civil registries. At present, such registries projects are underway or have been completed in nine of the OAS member states. The computerizing of records contributes to the consolidation of democracy by helping to ensure that electoral records are accurate and easy to access. In the area of civil registries, vital statistics are made more accessible to citizens - especially the poor -by dramatically reducing the time required to issue certificates and other essential documents and significantly lowering the costs and time to obtain them.
Modernization of Civil Registries
Andean Sub-regional Conference on Automation of Civil Registries and Electoral Procedures. This conference took place on August 17-18, 1999 in Quito, Ecuador, and was jointly organized with the Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Ecuador with the participation of representatives from Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela. The purpose of this conference was to stimulate modernization of civil registers and of electoral organizations as part of the programs in the area of state reform and consolidation of democratic systems. The conference agenda centered on four topics: institutional analysis and diagnosis of civil registry systems, technology applied in modernization, automated electoral processes, and sub-regional cooperation.
Modernizing Electoral Registries in Ecuador, Paraguay, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Belize, Grenada, Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. These projects included automating civil registries to ensure ease and efficiency of the voting process, as well as implementing information applications and training officials in their use. Further projects initiated birth and death registries and certification, emergency planning, and document recovery.
In addition, the UPD is working closely with the governments of Guatemala and Saint Lucia to provide technical expertise in the redrawing of the boundaries of electoral districts.[Democracy/tracker.htm]