Establishing the first indigenous electoral communication network in Latin America and Caribbean

Video on the workshop-seminar "Challenges on Electoral Communications for Indigenous Peoples" that took place in October 2011 in Quito, Ecuador and was organized by the UNDP and UN Women.

GPECS has facilitated the first network for electoral communication for indigenous people in Latin America and the Caribbean. Dina Chuquimia Alvarado of Bolivia’s Tribunal Supremo Electoral said the support enhances impact. “ UNDP support through the GPECS programme will have an important and long-term impact on capacity building and on the electoral communication within the indigenous communities. Through this type of support more and more citizens, especially in the provinces, can better understand the meaning of democracy in its various aspects, particularly in relation to participation throughout the electoral cycle,” she said.

Dina was one of more than 80 prominent media experts in Latin America and the Caribbean taking part in the seminar held in Quito. The event was co-organized by UNDP, GPECS and UN Women Andean Region. The seminar was an initial step to sensitize and train indigenous communicators and journalists in electoral cycle dynamics and on new information technologies so that participants could also share their knowledge within their own indigenous communities.

A specific session was held to talk about the modern technologies and the use of social media. Discussion touched upon direct access to information, unfiltered news, multipliers effects of re-tweeting or sharing posts, and examples about how to maximize communication activities adjusted to indigenous contexts. Indigenous people are increasingly using social media as an effective way to share experiences, knowledge and traditions.

At the end of the seminar a programmatic declaration was signed where participants and the UN entities present agreed to create an indigenous network of communicators and to implement a media monitoring system on the electoral cycle. They also approved initiatives for building capacities in the communications domain with an intercultural dimension, and to facilitate the use and knowledge of information technology. The aim is to enable indigenous people to have better access to and knowledge of institutional norms and processes related to electoral cycles.