Like other natural disasters, wildfires can have sudden calamitous impacts on communities, destroying buildings, damaging infrastructure and displacing populations. In this chapter we examine the Californian wildfires occurring from September 2015 to November 2018 to assess their effect on two electoral cycles in the state (2016 and 2018), and to study how electoral practitioners cope with these challenges in a developed democratic setting.

This case study seeks to establish how electoral officials grappled with the challenges posed by fires, and what lessons can be drawn from their experience.

Read more about other countries' case studies on The Impact of Natural Hazards on Elections page.


Publication date
01 September 2022
Sarah Birch and Jeff Fischer
Number of pages

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Wildfire and Elections in California

Case Study, 1 September 2022
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