The European Union (EU) funded project ‘Support to Electoral Processes and Democracy – STEP Democracy’ – supports inclusive, peaceful and credible electoral processes, and enhances the capacity of stakeholders to strengthen the democratic transition in Myanmar. STEP Democracy builds on the achievements from the projects’ first phase (2015-2018) where the programme worked to foster a deeper awareness of, and advocacy for, reform to the legal framework and played a key role in supporting the administration of credible elections, which were widely perceived to be the first step in Myanmar’s wider democratic transition. STEP Democracy is an integrated programme closely coordinated with all key national stakeholders – the Union Election Commission (UEC), political parties and civil society organizations involved in domestic election observation, voter and civic education, and advocacy for reform.
The programme is unique in bringing national and international expertise to a wide range of Myanmar’s electoral stakeholders, and firmly entrenches local ownership throughout all phases of the electoral cycle. Its methodologies have proven to make knowledge transfer sustainable through comprehensive technical advice, capacity development, voter education, and dialogue promotion.
International IDEA, as the lead implementing organization, works with four international and four national organizations to implement the programme’s mission to contribute to a greater awareness of, and adherence to, democratic values and principles and increased inclusive participation in democratic practices. This mission builds on a lager vision to create a society founded on broad engagement in democratic institutions and processes.
STEP’s partners include the Danish Institute for Parties and Democracy (DIPD), Democracy Reporting International (DRI), and the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD)/ DemoFinland, Hornbill Organization, Scholar Institute, Paññā Institute and Naushawng Development Institute. STEP Democracy has a strong commitment to a flexible approach to democratic reform which is mindful of the rich history and cultural diversity of Myanmar.