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Denmark Ranks High in Voter Turnout Among 170 Global Democracies

Denmark Ranks High in Voter Turnout Among 170 Global Democracies

Denmark has had one of the most stable trends in voter turnout among Western European countries since 1945, according to data recently released by the Stockholm-based International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (International IDEA). The average turnout for parliamentary elections has been approximately 85 percent and has not varied more than 3-4 percent to date. This average turnout ranks Denmark 33rd among 170 countries in IDEA's comparative, global study of average turnout since 1945. When not including eleven countries with compulsory voting, Denmark jumps to 22nd. The share of invalid blank votes in Danish parliamentary elections is very low, usually below 1 percent.

While postal voting is practiced in all five Nordic countries, only five percent of Danish voters use this option, the lowest percentage in the Nordic countries. Approximately 40 percent of Swedish and Finnish voters use postal voting in comparison.

International IDEA notes that Denmark does not have an independent Electoral Management Body and consequently elections are overseen by the Ministry of Interior's Electoral Section. Only about five countries in Western Europe have independent Electoral Management Bodies, among the Nordic countries only Sweden has an EMB, established in July 2001.

Established in 1995, International IDEA is an international organization with a unique mandate - to support the global spread of democracy. International IDEA currently has 19 member-states, drawn from all four continents, and four international NGOs as associate members. The Institute also has formal agreements and co-operates closely with a number of intergovernmental organizations and multilateral agencies. Denmark is a founding member of International IDEA.

For further information, consult "Voter Turnout 1945 to Date," at International IDEA's Voter Turnout Website, or contact International IDEA Researcher Maria Gratschew tel. +46 8 698 3762, e-mail



International IDEA
Tel: +46 8 698 3700, Fax: +46 8 20 24 22
International IDEA, Strömsborg, S-103 34 Stockholm, Sweden