One of the recent projects that IFES has worked on is the Election Judgment Database. This database compiles cases from countries around the world. These cases have summaries on the fact pattern as well as the outcome making them a convenient resource.
This database was created to help increase awareness but also to contributed to a more accessible narrative about elections and how these cases are handled internationally. IFES has also released an Elections on Trial publication. This publication utilizes comparative research on election disputes in six countries to identify fundamental principles that they found were essential to protecting open justice and procedural justice in election cases. These principles are fairness, efficiency, effectiveness, and transparency.
In collaboration with the two other legal fellows that were working at IFES over the summer, I was able to help create a social media campaign to raise awareness about the resources that are available to practitioners. We selected cases to highlight based judgments that were in a country that had a holiday that would occur during the campaign or tackled an important legal issue.
We also determined what other posts would be helpful for the databases. These included a tutorial on how to navigate the website and spotlights on different cases. This was an incredible opportunity because in the process of carrying out this campaign I was able to participate in meetings with IFES leadership and their communication department to determine their vision as well as find support for the creation of graphics and video clips. Because the campaign was scheduled to continue past the summer, I worked with the other interns to schedule upcoming posts to ensure that the campaign would be comprehensive and carried out in a smooth manner.
The projects that involved other members of IFES have been the most interesting. I have really appreciated being able to connect with other employees on different projects. Roughly every other week we have meetings with the other programs (the employees outside of legal) that worked in our section of IFES that was known as the center. These are opportunities to hear about the progress that had been made on youth, women, and many other initiatives. It is really fascinating to hear about all the complexities involved in elections. It is also an amazing opportunity to create connections with other individuals who worked there.
As part of these meetings, there would be a trivia game that was created by one of the employees. These were the highlight of any meeting and ranged from questions on flags to New Jersey. This was a great time for us to learn more about each other. I have really appreciated the comradery that has existed and how willing everyone has been to talk more about what they do and listen to why they care so much about the work that they are contributing to.