ECES will employ two seperate methodologies for the prevention, mitigation, and management of electoral violence and also for the implementation of LEAD training. both of these methologies will be gide by the Electoral Cycle approach. The electoral cycles approach takes into account the diverse factors that lead up to the election. More information about the electoral cycle approach can be found here. With that said, the methologoies for conflict prevention and LEAD training are as follows:
Electoral Conflict Prevention:
Adequate understanding of the various elements, stages and fragile points of the electoral cycle in any given country is crucial to better plan and respond to electoral conflict. The aim should be to create realistic expectations from the outset as to what is achievable and needed in the short-term, as well as identifying what are the objectives of mid- and longer-term initiatives. Adding to the complexity of the inter-connected cycle of stages, each phase and the transition to the next usually comes with its own set of fragile moments, both internal and external to the electoral cycle.
South Africa will undergo not only the key stages of the pre- and electoral period with the habitual activities that takes place in most countries with periodical elections such as voter registration updates, boundary delimitation and candidate registration, but also a number of significant foreseen and unforeseen events outside of the electoral cycle. The internal ANC election in December 2017 is likely to induce the “electoral mind-set” amongst political actors and the general population and may provoke an even more aggressive campaign-like environment. The complex and conflictual intra and interparty dynamics are likely to remain or escalate and both the Parliament and most notably KZN continues to be a battle ground where the ends justify undemocratic methods. This project will draw on a larger understanding of the electoral cycle, but add an analytical layer that is contingent of the evolving political and electoral issues and conflicts that may arise from within or outside the electoral cycle, but are nevertheless likely to impact on the process. To this end, the project will use available structures of information but also set out to harvest data via its contact with provincial conflict mediation structures and by the extension, the peace infrastructures. The IEC will share relevant information from the other conflict management structures such as the PPLCs and their interaction with SAPS.
With regards to capacity building activities, the Project has built-in mechanisms to ensure strong ownership and designed to strengthen already existing skill-sets while building new capacities where gaps are emerging.
A specific methodology will be used for delivering capacity enhancing training to provincal conflict mediation panels and other key stakeholders entitled “Leadership and Conflict Management skills for Electoral Administrators” (LEAD) training modality. LEAD entails both a training of trainers (ToT) and a cascade component. The methodology is designed to promote skills in the crossroads between leadership, election-related violence and conflict prevention. Three crucial leadership skills can be disentangled in the LEAD: vision (ability to set direction, diagnosing and analysing problems and grasping essential aspects of the developments), competence (ability to make decisions, create alignment and motivate staff and collaborators) and integrity (capacity to maintain commitments, keep promises and ensure consistency between values, actions, expectations and outcomes). Those who have been trained as facilitators will be co-facilitating cascade workshops together with senior facilitators to grow into an independent and certified LEAD facilitator, able to deliver further workshops using the LEAD curriculum without external support.
The innovative LEAD training derives from a solid partnership established between ECES and the Centre for Creative Leadership - Leadership Beyond Boundaries (CCL-LBB) that aims to develop capacity in the crossroads between conflict management and leadership by building on the specific experiences of key stakeholders.
A multidimensional gender strategy that engenders men and women as more multi-facetted than being one homogenous group will be adopted.