As the global leader in democracy promotion, IFES advances good governance and democratic rights by providing technical assistance to election officials; empowering the underrepresented to participate in the political process; and applying field-based research to improve the electoral cycle. Since 1987, IFES has worked in over 135 countries, from developing democracies to mature democracies.
History of IFES in Indonesia
Since 1998, IFES has provided technical assistance to support Indonesia’s civil society and democratic institutions. Emerging from over three decades of “New Order” authoritarian rule in 1998, Indonesia entered an era of bold reform characterized by democratic institution building and decentralization of governance. Not without challenges and setbacks, this program of Reformasi has proven largely successful. Indonesia is seen today as a vibrant regional example of democracy working to achieve political stability in a nation of varied culture, religion, politics, and regional identities.
Much of IFES’ assistance has focused on supporting Indonesia’s General Elections Commission (KPU) in efforts to improve electoral management and operations. Over the last three national election cycles IFES provided international support to legal and regulatory drafting, electoral system design, results reporting and seat allocation, electoral boundary delimitation, electoral dispute resolution, voter registration, poll worker training material, voter education and public information. IFES programs have often reached beyond the KPU to involve the Constitutional Court, the Indonesian Legislature, the Ministry of Home Affairs, and KPU provincial and regency/municipality (kabupaten/kota) offices. IFES has also supported civil society initiatives in civic and voter education, elections violence monitoring, disability access, women’s representation, money and politics, and electoral reform.
One of IFES current initiatives has also launched a regional effort to support electoral access for persons with disabilities with local partners in Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, Laos, Malaysia and Cambodia.
This network is led by Indonesian civil society partners. New and enhanced methodologies for monitoring disability access will include regional indices and reports to regional bodies. Findings from monitoring missions are shared with CSOs in several ASEAN member states. IFES fosters a dialogue to share best practices in disability access, and build new partnerships between DPOs and election CSOs to advocate for the electoral rights of persons with disabilities.
The activities of IFES Indonesia are funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and by the Australian Government.