|An online BRIDGE workshop on civic education, voter information and access to the electoral process was held in Mexico from 23 to 25 February 2021. This workshop was organized by the UNDP Country Office in Mexico and the National Electoral Institute (INE), in collaboration with the UNDP Regional Center for Latin America and the Caribbean. It was mainly addressed to electoral administrators, with the goal of strengthening their capacities ahead of the upcoming Federal elections next June. Executive personnel from different units of the INE engaged in this initiative and participated actively in the BRIDGE workshop.
The first day of the workshop dealt with the conceptual framework around civic education and voter education and information, clarifying definitions and setting up the main principles. On the second day, participants explored inclusivity in civic education and voter information, considering citizens’ needs and strategies to ensure access of under-represented groups to relevant information for the effective enjoyment of their political rights. The third day of the workshop was dedicated to planning voter information programmes and developing specific tools within this framework. Through group work and dialogue, participants put in practice their planning skills and developed practical tools for inclusive voter education and information.
The facilitation team was composed by Gabriela Nones and Lluis Juan Rodriguez. Participants also benefitted from the expertise of technology specialists, including Alfredo Dominguez, Wilmer Castaneda and Oscar Ivan Rodriguez, who provided support in the use of technological tools and platforms and developed a virtual classroom. Monica Eden, Michel Salinas and Lizbeth Teresa, from the UNDP Country Office in Mexico, in collaboration with the INE’s Unit for Electoral Training and Civic education, contributed to ensure the logistics and relations with participants. The UNDP Regional Center for Latin America and the Caribbean also provided support in the organization of this workshop.
This is the fifth BRIDGE workshop jointly conducted by the INE and UNDP in Mexico. It allowed electoral administrators to experience the BRIDGE methodology first hand and get to know better the strengths of this learning approach. The INE and UNDP plan to give continuity to this collaboration in the upcoming months and develop a long-term capacity building strategy for electoral stakeholders through BRIDGE workshops.
Author – Lluís Juan Rodriguez