Supporting political finance transparency from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe



Dr. Magnus Ohman has worked with political finance issues since the 1990s, focusing on increasing compliance, transparency and sustainable solutions. His research includes both country and macro-level studies of trends and practices in political finance oversight and related areas, such as abuse of state resources, gender equality and electoral violence. His practical work includes assistance to legislators, implementing agencies, civil society, media and political parties. Among others, he has advised the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters at the Australian House of Representatives, the Parliament of Montenegro, the National Election Commission of Liberia and the Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan.

Serving as Senior Political Finance Adviser  at the  International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), he has supported political finance initiatives in some 50 countries, including Afghanistan, Albania, Armenia, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Egypt, Ethiopia, Fiji, Ghana, Georgia, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, North Macedonia, the Maldives, Moldova, Montenegro, Myanmar / Burma, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Poland, the Philippines, Romania, Serbia, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Tanzania, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Ukraine, the UK, the US, Yemen and Zimbabwe. His other role at IFES is as Director of the Regional Europe Office based in Prague, Czech Republic. 

Dr. Ohman was the lead writer of the BRIDGE  module on political finance and his writings on political finance have been translated into 20 languages, including Albanian, Arabic, Armenian, Bangla / Bengali, Burmese / Myanmar, Dari, French, Georgian, Bahasa Indonesia, Khmer, Kyrgyz, Nepali, Pashto, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Sinhala, Tamil, Ukrainian and Urdu.

Apart from IFES, he has also done work for the  United Nations Development Programthe Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, The European Commission, the National Democratic InstituteElectoral Reform International Services,  the Danish Institute for Parties and Democracy , Lisa Klein Associates  and  the Carter Center . He also managed the creation of the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance database on political finance regulations in 120 countries, and co-edited and co-authored its book on Funding of Political Parties and Election Campaigns.

He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Uppsala, Sweden, and is a board member of the International Political Science Research Committee on Political Finance and Political Corruption .

Dr. Ohman has appeared on the BBC World Service, Voice of America, Deutsche Welle, C-SPAN and Huffington Post. He has been invited as a speaker by universities such as Bremen, Cairo, Denver, the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Stanford and Western Cape, and by organizations such as the Commonwealth Secretariat, the European Union, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the National Democratic Institute and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.