The Innovative Resources In Support of Elections | IRIS-ELECTIONS programme aims to strengthen electoral stakeholders' capacities through innovative, effective and sustainable capacity enhancer curriculum.


The programme’s name IRIS takes inspiration from the Greek mythology. Being in charge of transmitting information and news quickly and accurately, Iris is considered the goddess of communication and new initiatives. Once Iris transmitted her message, she was leaving a colourful wave behind. The choice of the name IRIS is therefore not trivial and it acquires even more importance in the electoral field.


Indeed, electoral authorities and other election stakeholders in general are no stranger to the difficulties related to an effective transfer of knowledge and capacities to large audiences. These electoral actors often resort to cascade training programmes within tight deadlines, which results very often in a significant loss of the quality of the message, as content to be transmitted is diluted throughout the waterfall from the capital to the smaller branches. The cascade training then result in an incomplete message for the final beneficiaries and uneven quality among various levels of training. This leads to a significant loss of efficiency and consistency and can endanger the effective implementation of elections. To date, there has been little recourse and programme to address these critical issues for the successful implementation of the tasks for administration and electoral actors.


To cope with this problem and pave the way for an innovative method, the European Support Centre for Electoral Processes (ECES), in partnership with the School of Electoral Training in Central Africa (EFEAC) and Scytl, a Spanish enterprise specializing in electoral modernization, including voting and distance learning, offers a new curriculum. Together, they had the idea of combining cascade training and eLearning electoral content in order to make available high quality multimedia and harmonized content to train trainers and to ensure the consistency of the message throughout the cascade training.


The IRIS-ELECTIONS programme was consequently designed to propose innovative, stable and easily transmissible content on a large-scale that counts on two main components:

• Hybrid face-to-face training: combining innovative multimedia content and face to face implementation, with training of trainers and specific modular trainings, allowing trainers to rely on interactive and high quality electoral content.

• Long-distance training: allowing the enrolment of one eLearning module and the attendance of each towards an advanced diploma, and the totality of the modules towards a Masters in Electoral Cycle Management.


From this curriculum, three types of activities can be therefore be implemented. 


The curriculum, intended for both professionals and students, comprises 14 different modules covering all the stages of the electoral cycle and combining various learning support tools:


- The eLearning content, available either on the Internet or a USB stick (meaning that internet connection is not necessary for following the course).

- The Trainer Guide and material for participants, which allows for the implementation of face-to-face training programmes.

- Various multimedia supports aimed at motivating the participants and illustrating the content.

- Training of Trainers courses that provides participants with a system of certification that ensures the quality of trainers’ presentations skills and the accurate use of the learning tools.