The project “More citizen participation and more reason in elections: online tools and public debates for engaging citizens with National and European elections in Bulgaria” is financed by the Trust for Civil Society in Central and Eastern Europe and implemented in partnership with the Centre for Liberal Strategies. Its aim is to involve citizens in the political process, to raise their interest in elections and informed decision making, and to broaden their knowledge about political parties and their strategic documents. The project seeks a change in attitudes among Bulgarian citizens towards policy, elections and political parties.
More than 22 years after the collapse of Communism Bulgarian civil society still has a limited impact on setting agendas, defining policies and decisions on both national and EU level that directly affect the country. Although the civil society is gathering increasing strength and demonstrates that it has the capacity to change the national agenda and keep the government into account, it is still insufficiently consolidated and lacks the tools for initiating substantive national debates and monitoring policy commitments.
To involve citizens in the political process and to increase their interest in elections, informed decision-making has to be introduced in society and voters’ knowledge about parties and their strategic documents and decisions has to be raised. The online voting tests Glasovoditel and Glasosleditel aim at deepening voters’ knowledge about political parties and proposed policies, and in the same time to educate citizens to make informed choice in election time. Within the project, a series of debates is to be organized for raising quality of the political process and widening the informed public participation in politics in Bulgaria by achieving higher political transparency and better accountability.
– Increasing the interest in the general elections;
– Inducing a wide public participation in informed policy debates and decision making;
– Making citizens aware of existing cleavages in party programs on specific important issues;
– Contributing to a more rational election campaign and more rational voting behaviour;
– Securing long term informed citizens control over key policy issues of national interest;
– Making parties aware of voters’ increased capacity to be informed and to hold parties accountable.
– Organisation of public debates;
– Preparation of Glasosleditel positions;
– Preparation of Glasovoditel statements;
– Launching the Glasosleditel and Glasovoditel (for each elections);
– Media coverage organization, preparation, launching and maintenance of public presence;
– Summarising and disseminating of the results.
The project is financed by the Trust for Civil Society in Central and Eastern Europe
September 2012- August 2014
- Increased interest in the general elections;
- Induced wide public participation in informed policy debates and decision making;
- Change in the attitudes of Bulgarian citizens towards policy, elections and political parties in particular.