Kenya Election Violence Prevention
PeaceTech Lab partnered with Mercy Corps to implement the Kenya Election Violence Prevention and Response Program (KEVP). This initiative, funded by the U.S. Department of State, was designed to mitigate the risk of election-related violence in the lead up to, during, and immediately following the 2017 Kenyan elections.
Together with Mercy Corps, the Lab supported the on-going efforts of Kenyan civil society organizations, including student organizations, youth bunges (parliaments), the local private sector, religious groups, and other local organizations in Kisumu, Nakuru, Nandi, and Nairobi counties to ensure that youth and communities were able to remain resilient to political manipulation and ensure a peaceful election.
PeaceTech Lab served as the technology partner on the project by implementing an SMS platform in all four counties. The SMS platform serves as an early warning and early response system through which communities can report cases of election-related tension, rumors, hate speech, and brewing violence. The Lab worked with community leaders to develop targeted peace messaging via SMS to respond to early warning messages in areas that were most at-risk for violence.
The Lab also monitored the use of hateful language on social media by analyzing and contextualizing key terminology used to propagate hate against individuals, candidates, and communities. Such monitoring and analysis is intended to assist communities, security officials, and other response hubs in understanding how to respond to virulent election-related hate speech on social media.
Kenya Electoral Timeline
PeaceTech Lab tracked potential violence-triggering events throughout Kenya's election season to provide an effective response to identified conflict hot spots.