Percentage of elections judged free and fair; and average turnout among voting age population, 1980-2012. Graphic: World Bank / World Development Report 2017

18 December 2017 (World Bank) – The majority of the world’s countries are governed by democratic regimes. Elections are one of the most well-established mechanisms available to citizens to strengthen accountability and responsiveness to their demands. The 2017 World Development Report on Governance finds that although they have become the most common mechanism to elect authorities around the world, elections are increasingly perceived as unfair. Since the 1940s, voter turnout has been declining worldwide. According to the report, ordinary citizens and marginalized groups sometimes find political parties unwilling to represent and articulate their demands. Globally, political parties rank as the least trusted political institution.

Year in Review: 2017 in 12 Charts



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