The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities observes territorial elections in the 46 member States of the Council of Europe and sometimes beyond, further to the invitation of the national authorities concerned. This activity is complementary to the monitoring of the application of the European Charter of Local Self-Government, a legal reference instrument for local democracy in Europe. To date, more than 100 election observation missions have been carried out by the Congress.
In addition to observation missions and country reports, the Congress regularly examines recurring and transversal issues related to local and regional elections. It has adopted a series of reports on independent candidates and opposition, deliberative methods, referendums at local level, elections in major crisis situations, the right to vote for migrants and displaced persons, misuse of administrative resources, criteria for standing in elections, voters residing abroad and voting at 16.
The “Democratic Elections” series includes the according recommendations of the Congress.