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A Comparative Analysis of Electoral Management Bodies in Central America


This dissertation enhances our understanding of elections and electoral processes in developing democracies by examining the institutions responsible for the management of elections - electoral management bodies (EMBs). This study provides a comparative analysis of electoral management bodies in the Central American states that democratized during the third wave of democratization, including El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. In so doing, this dissertation 1) explains the introduction of formally independent EMBs in each of these cases, 2) explains the development of autonomy and impartiality exhibited by each EMB, and 3) explains citizens' trust in their respective EMB. This study contributes the scholarly literature on elections and election management in developing democracies. This study also makes a significant contribution to the policy community by indentifying concrete areas in which to strengthen democracy.

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