About Election Guide

About ElectionGuide

ElectionGuide is a resource provided by the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), an international nonprofit dedicated to building democracies that deliver for all. Launched in 1998, ElectionGuide is the most comprehensive and timely source of verified election information available online. It provides content on:

  • National elections around the world;
  • Political parties and candidates;
  • Referendum provisions;
  • News on election-related laws and developments around the world;
  • Political institutions and electoral systems;
  • Election results and voter turnout.

IFES’ Center for Applied Research and Learning houses the ElectionGuide research team, which gathers the data, analyzes results, and maintains the consistency and accuracy of ElectionGuide.

The ElectionGuide team conducts research and updates the site daily with new information on elections and international news. Our methodology is based on quality research and data collection, objective analysis, and strict verification procedures.

Recent Enhancements

Elections and COVID-19

Best Practices

As the world reacts to a new pandemic (COVID-19), it is essential that election management bodies (EMBs) and public authorities around the world make sensible and well-informed decisions regarding whether and how to hold scheduled electoral activities. IFES has gathered a series of recommendations to guide EMB planning and implementation of electoral events during this period that is informed by general guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and best practices issued by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC). These recommendations are also informed by IFES’ engagement with EMBs around the world who have conducted electoral processes during public health crises.

Elections Postponements

Facing public health concerns, elections around the world have been postponed due to COVID-19. IFES has called upon its global network of election authorities, local partners and field offices to aggregate the latest information on election postponements and adjusted election dates. This resource will be regularly updated as we surface new information. Please note, this list is intended to be an informative resource but may not be comprehensive. Given the rapid evolution of the election landscape, this list has not been subject to the stringent verification standards we use for standard ElectionGuide data. Please contact IFES at ElectionGuide@ifes.org if you have knowledge of additional election postponements or believe any data in this resource to be inaccurate.

Data Collection Expansion

In December 2019, IFES partnered with Facebook to increase ElectionGuide’s capacity to provide more comprehensive election data. These expanded efforts include the collection of additional data points, more frequent data updates, and higher quality verification measures over the one-year project period.

  • Additional data points include information on campaign silence periods, candidate registration deadlines, minimum voting ages, mandated election start dates, accessibility guidelines, and more.
  • These additional data fields have been collected by IFES Legal Researchers. Each country’s data points will be sent for review to the respective EMB, as well as to a relevant civil society organization in-country. 

These expanded data points will be featured on ElectionGuide beginning in April 2020.

In addition to supporting ElectionGuide’s mission to provide reliable election information to the public, this data will support Facebook’s ongoing civic integrity research aimed at understanding the role of its platforms in elections across the world.

How to Use Election Guide

Available Information on the Site

Country profiles, which maintain a record of past electoral events for that country, can be accessed by clicking on the name or flag of the country.[1]

Election profiles are linked from election type names or dates. As each election date approaches, the ElectionGuide research team compiles an election profile. This consists of the following elements:

  • Election date and type[2]
  • Description of government structure
  • Description of electoral system
  • Candidates and/or political parties participating in the election, or referendum provisions
  • Outcomes of previous election(s)
  • Population
  • Registered voters and voter turnout
  • Election results
  • News and items of interest about the electoral/political context

We post election profiles approximately two weeks before an election date. Some past elections may be missing profiles; enhancing the comprehensiveness of this information is a priority of our data collection expansion efforts.

Verifying Information

To provide verified election dates, IFES consults with the following sources for confirmation of election dates and profile information:

  • Country election authorities
  • Other official government sources, including US-based embassies
  • Verified news sources
  • Other sources: If necessary, other sources can be used, including IFES field staff and inter-governmental organizations (e.g. OSCE, UN).

Any of the above four methods yields a sufficient confirmation in order to place the election entry on the calendar. As the anticipated date nears, IFES attempts to substitute secondary sources with primary ones, until eventually the election authority is the source of record.

To verify election profiles, ElectionGuide identifies both a country expert and an official source to confirm the profile information. We may post with only one of these sources if dual confirmation is not possible.

To verify election results, ElectionGuide uses numbers only from official sources (that is, a country election authority, embassy, or other government-affiliated source), or, in rare cases, several media sources in which matching official results are quoted.

Contact ElectionGuide

If you have any questions or comments about the site or its contents, please contact ElectionGuide@ifes.org.


[1] Former countries or former names of existing countries may not have active country profile pages. Past election profiles for these countries are available by looking at the Calendar, or by using the quick searchadvanced search, or generate data features.

[2] In most cases, the complete election date (month, day, year) is noted on the calendar. For those cases where the actual date has not yet been determined, the month and year is provided. Every effort is made to provide the precise election date as soon as it can be confirmed using the method cited above.


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