The Pulse of the Nation: Polling political opinions at the Samoa Election

The 2016 Samoan election was held on 4 March. It was preceded by a number of significant amendments to electoral processes, notably the institution of a 10 per cent gender quota, the disestablishment of the Individual Voters’ Roll, and changes to rules around gifting. This seminar will highlight the preliminary findings of the Domestic Observation Project, co-ordinated by SSGM and the National University of Samoa, which sent observers to twelve different constituencies in Upolu and Savai’i to observe the campaigning period, polling day, and counting. The seminar will focus on people’s attitudes toward women’s participation in the election; the dynamics of the election in newly established constituencies; attitudes towards gifting; the influence contemporary politics has on Samoan culture; and conducting cross-cultural research in elections.

Speakers: Roannie Ng Shiu and George Carter

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