Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Voting patterns and ethnicity in Kenya

A new report brings intriguing data about voting patterns in Kenya. To no one's surprise, elections in God's own country are mostly an exercise in ethnic head-counting. But not always.

There are other factors that pull at the electorate, and at least in the minds of the respondents, evidence of an aspiration towards elections as a referendum on the performance of the incumbent rather than a mindless affirmation of ethnic affiliation. The importance of ethnicity it seems is dependent on the voter's self-ascribed identity, with "ethnics" more often employing feelings of group identity and "non-ethnics" more often making rational calculations of self and group interest.

Read and Discuss here.