Professionals or Amateurs? Evidence-Based Policy Making and the 2013 Voter Registration Project
Using original interview data, this paper explores the decision-making processes behind a 2013 youth voter outreach project between an election management body (Elections BC) and a youth voter focused non-profit organization (Apathy is Boring) called the Youth Registration Project. The project idea that Apathy is Boring brought to Elections BC was new for Canada. Never before had a non-profit, non-partisan organization, worked directly with an election management body, to register voters by enumeration. My thesis discusses what Elections BC and Apathy is Boring did together to improve youth voter turnout rates, as well as how and why they came to these decisions. My main argument is that the professional policy maker, Elections BC, made decisions based on evidence, compared to Apathy is Boring, which tended to be more amateur in its decision-making, simply following intuition. These findings are useful because they reveal some of the decision-making processes behind youth voter turnout initiatives in Canada, which in turn can help policy-makers improve upon engagement strategies related to the youth vote.
Evidence-Based Decision Making, Voter Outreach, Election Management Bodies, Policy Cycle, Young Voters
Master of Arts (M.A.)