Understanding and explaining outbreaks of election-related violence is a complex task; predicting whether forthcoming elections will turn violent, which factors may underlie or trigger violence, and what can be done to prevent violence is even more difficult. One way to address the problem is to empower those who have immediate responsibility to prevent and mitigate election-related violence, such as electoral management bodies, security sector agencies and other state and non-state agencies.

The Electoral Risk Management Tool (ERM Tool) is designed to empower people to ensure peaceful and credible elections. The software aims to build the capacities of users to understand, analyse and mitigate electoral risks. Specifically, the ERM Tool can build users’ capacity to understand electoral risk factors; collect and analyse risk data; design prevention and mitigation strategies; and record the results of actions. 

The software is accompanied by three Guides. The External Factors Guide is a support document to the ERM Tool. In conjunction with the Internal Factors Guide, it provides guidance to the users of the ERM Tool in identifying electoral risks in a given country and electoral context.


Publication date
22 August 2018
Sead Alihodzic, Catalina Uribe Burcher
Number of pages
978-91-7671-210-8 (PDF)



About this Guide

1 Poor socio-economic conditions 

2 Social and political exclusion  

3 Conflict relating to changing power dynamics  

4 Gender-based discrimination and violence  

5 The presence of non-state armed actors 

6 The presence of organized crime  

7 Grievances relating to genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes 

8 Human rights violations 

9 Environmental hazards  

10 Unethical media reporting 


About the authors  

About the ERM Tool  

About International IDEA  

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Electoral Risk Management Tool: External Factors Guide

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