Democracy International (DI) supported the TSE as it implemented fundamental electoral reforms and prepared for legislative and municipal elections in March 2012 by providing targeted technical assistance. During the pre-election period, DI’s assistance focused on four main areas: (1) communications, (2) electoral operations, (3) information technology, and (4) vote counting and results transmission.

DI set out to strengthen the TSE’s communications capabilities by providing strategic planning and design support for voter education campaigns, implementing better voter outreach efforts, and improving poll-worker training materials. DI supported electoral operations by assisting technical departments within TSE on their preparation efforts. To improve the TSE’s use of information technology, DI collaborated with the TSE communications team to upgrade its web-based capabilities.

Lastly, DI supported the TSE’s vote counting and results transmission by organizing and training for the final vote count process and offering strategies to improve efficiency of transmitting and reporting preliminary results. In particular, DI worked with the TSE to conduct two important technical tests to ensure seamless results tabulation on election day.

DI’s voter education efforts focused on developing a sustainable, nationwide network of local civil society organizations to conduct a voter education campaign in the month leading up the election. As part of this campaign, DI worked with local partners to develop innovative approaches and materials to inform voters on how to vote, where to vote, and why to vote and to promote interest in and awareness about the new electoral reforms.

Following the March 2012 elections, DI has continued to support the TSE to identify gaps in its long-term capacity and create a plan for internal modernization. DI is conducting an evaluation of elections to provide the TSE with recommendations for future institutional strengthening. At the same time, DI is working with Salvadoran civil society to support advocacy efforts for further political and electoral reforms.