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Somali politics and society

Somaliland

30 September 2021

Photo credit: Kate Stanworth


Research projects

Spatial Inequality in Times of Urban Transition: Complex Land Markets

The main aim of this research is to understand how complex land markets influence spatial justice within the current urban transition in East Africa.

View the full research page for further information.

Overview

The main aim of this research project is to understand how complex land markets influence spatial justice within the current urban transition in East Africa, and the project objectives include:

To understand and explain the complex land markets in each of the selected cities and how these relate to contextual factors, including an analysis of the stakeholders involved and the mechanisms of the institutionalisations of CLM (Arua and Kampala in Uganda, and Hargeisa and Berbera in Somaliland); To provide evidence of the risks and costs of urbanisation if trends in inequalities and spatial development remain the same; To develop policy-relevant recommendations related to land governance and equitable and sustainable urban development.

View the full research page for further information.

Somali Political Development: women’s leadership and participation

Recent research recognises the importance of political settlements -on-going, adaptable political processes- in determining the equitability of development and the level of stability in societies.

View the full research page for further information.

Overview

This project focuses on Somaliland as an excellent case for analysis of power relationships between formal and informal actors in a relatively stable environment, but with strong applicability across a wider area: the Somali Horn of Africa, and with insights that are also useful elsewhere.

View the full research page for further information.


Outputs

Blogs

Coronavirus and the State of Non-recognition: The Case of Somaliland – PART 2
By Jama Musse Jama

Coronavirus and the State of Non-recognition: The Case of Somaliland – PART 1
By Jama Musse Jama

“The Limits of Consensus?”: Somaliland’s 2017 presidential election observed
By Conrad Heine with Michael Walls

Women’s Political Participation in Somaliland
By Lilian Schofield

Post-election Reflections from Somaliland
By Lilian Schofield

International engagement in Somalia: lessons from Somaliland?
By Michael Walls

Somaliland: proof that aid doesn’t work …?
By Michael Walls

Power and Politics: A reflection on political settlement
By Michael Walls

Podcasts

State-building in Somalia: federalism, security and development

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A Somali Nation-State: history, culture and Somaliland's political transition

Mix Cloud Widget Placeholderhttps://www.mixcloud.com/dpuucl/a-somali-nation-state-history-culture-an...

 

Thinking Cities Episode 5: Land markets

Mix Cloud Widget Placeholder Thinking Cities Episode 5: Land markets

 
 


Election Observation Missions

About the election observation missions

Somaliland Parliamentary and Local Council Election Observation Mission 2021

Ahead of Somaliland’s long-delayed second parliamentary election and third local council elections on 31 May 2021, a DPU-led team of 12 international observers is arriving in Hargeysa.

Read more about the Parliamentary and Local Council Election Observation Mission 2021

View the report here

Overview

The limited international election observation mission (LIEOM) has been invited by Somaliland’s National Electoral Commission (NEC) and is funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office of the United Kingdom. The LIEOM is organised by the Development Planning Unit (DPU) at University College London. The LIEOM will conduct its observation activities in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, emphasising the impartiality of its observation.

This is the fifth election in Somaliland observed by DPU since 2005. Part of the LIEOM’s mandate will be to assess Somaliland’s new General Law for National Elections and Voters’ Registration and its implementation. The elections mark an important moment for democracy in Somaliland: after significant delays to both polls, this is the first time that national and local elections have been combined.

Read more about the Parliamentary and Local Council Election Observation Mission 2021

View the report here

Somaliland Presidential Election Observation Mission 2017

International observers of Somaliland’s presidential election on 13 November 2017 arrive in Somaliland, hoping for a successful and peaceful poll.

View the full webpage more information on the 2017 Presidential Election Observation Mission

Overview

The international election observation mission (EOM) was been invited by Somaliland’s National Electoral Commission (NEC) and was funded by the British government. The EOM conducted its observation activities in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, emphasising the impartiality of that observation.

The EOM was led by the DPU, and coordinated by Michael Walls.

This EOM marks the fourth election in Somaliland observed and reported on by DPU and Somaliland Focus since 2005.

View the full webpage more information on the 2017 Presidential Election Observation Mission

Launch of Somaliland International Observation Mission final report

Voter Registration 2016

The Somaliland voter registration process began on 16 January 2016, concluding on 26 September 2016, and was conducted by the Somaliland National Electoral Commission (NEC) in all six regions of the country. International development agency Progressio, the Development Planning Unit (DPU) at University College London (UCL), and members of Somaliland Focus (UK), observed the process at different points during this period. The international election observer (IEO) mission followed previous observations by these three organisations of Somaliland’s House of Representatives election in 2005, presidential election in 2010, and local council elections in 2012.

Output

Report by International Observers on the 2016 Voter Registration Process in Somaliland

Election Observation Mission 2012

On November 28th, 2012, Somaliland, the region that unilaterally declared independence from Somalia in 1991, held local council elections. The campaign and election was witnessed by Dr. Michael Walls and Stephanie Butcher of the DPU, who were a part of a 51-member team of international election observers, coordinated by Michael in collaboration with Dr. Steve Kibble of the international NGO, Progressio.

Read more about the Election Observation Mission 2012

Overview

This election marked an important moment for Somaliland because, as well as electing individual councillors, the vote was designed to select the top three political parties who would then be eligible to contest all other elections for the next decade. Of further regional significance was the presence for the first time of civil society representatives from South-Central Somalia and Puntland, acting as a team of ‘technical observers’ looking to learn from Somaliland elections, with a view to building a collective institutional understanding on election management amongst different Somali actors.

DPU’s involvement in Somaliland builds on Michael’s longstanding academic engagement in the region, and marks the second election observation mission that he has coordinated. DPU’s links with Somali academic interests are also reflected in a proposed research project currently being developed by a number of DPU staff members, including Michael and Stephanie, and focused on exploring the ‘economic knowledge’ of informal traders within Somaliland’s capital city of Hargeisa.

Read more about the Election Observation Mission 2012