Digital Campaigning And Political Finance In The Asia And The Pacific Region

Digital Campaigning And Political Finance In The Asia And The Pacific Region - New Age for an Old Problem

Authors:

Professor Joo-Cheong Tham (Director, Electoral Regulation Research Network), Professor Andrea Carson (Department of Politics, Media and Philosophy, La Trobe University), Amy Chinnappa (Lawyer and Policy Consultant), and Adhy Aman (Senior Programme Manager, International IDEA)

The report for this project is available here.

Abstract

The report studies the intersection between digital campaigning in elections, and political finance and its regulation in Asia and the Pacific region. In so doing, it connects the digital disruption with an existential threat to democracies across the world―money in politics. Political finance not only poses the danger of ‘policy capture’ but also, in worse scenarios, state capture by monied interests.

The report maps out the nature and extent of digital campaigning in the Asia and the Pacific region, with a focus on five country case studies (Australia, India, Indonesia, Japan and Kyrgyzstan), and it studies the regulation of digital campaigning under political finance laws. It analyses the democratic implications of digital campaigning for political finance and its regulation. Recommendations are provided for regulating the nexus between digital campaigning and political finance to enhance the benefits of digital campaigning for democracies in the Asia and the Pacific region.

Launch of the report

On  25 October 2022, the Digital Campaigning And Political Finance In The Asia And The Pacific Region report was launched at the University of Melbourne.

The report was officially launched by Dr Kevin Casas-Zamora (Secretary-General, International IDEA), with opening remarks by Adhy Aman (Senior Programme Manager, International IDEA), Warwick Gately, (Victorian Electoral Commissioner and ERRN Governance Board member). The launch featured a panel of speakers providing commentary and a discussion with the report's authors with was moderated by Leena Rikkila Tamang (Director of Asia and the Pacific Region, International IDEA). A video on the recording can be viewed below.

Speakers in the recording:

  • Adhy Aman, Senior Programme Manager, International IDEA (opening remarks and moderator)
  • Warwick Gately, Victorian Electoral Commissioner and ERRN Governance Board member
  • Dr Kevin Casas-Zamora, Secretary-General, International IDEA
  • Professor Joo-Cheong Tham, Director, Electoral Regulation Research Network
  • Leena Rikkila Tamang, Director of Asia and the Pacific Region, International IDEA (Q&A moderator)
  • Tom Rogers, Australian Electoral Commissioner
  • Major General Anil Verma (Retd), Head, Association for Democratic Reforms, India
  • Professor Andrea Carson, Department of Politics, Media and Philosophy, La Trobe University
  • Amy Chinnappa, Lawyer and Policy Consultant