CNES statutes

More than 25 national election studies founded CNES in Amsterdam in November 2022 and they approved of the statutes of the consortium.

The Statutes can be downloaded here


Statutes “Consortium of National Election Studies (CNES)”


Approved by the first CNES plenary meeting 5.11.2022


1.     Mission

The Consortium of National Election Studies (hereafter referred to as CNES) is the network of scientific national election studies that conduct election voter surveys for national general elections. CNES promotes the exchange of data, knowledge and standards on national elections and election studies in order to advance the understanding of electoral behaviour and electoral democracies through national and comparative election research.


2.     Membership

Members of CNES are scientific National Election Studies (NES), in principle one per country. Each NES names up to two representatives to CNES and has one vote. Members commit to the obligations listed below and sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the Chair of the Steering Committee. A supranational election study, like a European Parliament Election study, can also become a member of CNES.


3.     Obligations of members

The members of the consortium:

  • Contribute to the development of common standards for data collections in collaboration with other comparative projects such as CSES;
  • Commit to use standards for data collection in future election studies to facilitate comparative (cross-country and cross-project) research to the extent possible;
  • Commit to conducting, if possible, and funding, a national election study in their country for national elections in accordance with the common standards as well as the relevant scientific standards for such data collections;
  • Commit to FAIR principles for their data which includes sharing their data openly and without embargo, to the extent permitted by data protection regulations or funders, and make their data available for post-harmonisation in a CNES comparative data set that can be distributed to interested researchers through an established data archive;
  • Share other relevant materials such as questionnaires, study design and fieldwork, legal and ethical information relevant for the study, funding and costs, campaign information and political context as defined by the consortium in accordance with agreed standards and without embargo;
  • Appoint up to two members to represent the national election study in the plenary.
4.     Plenary session

A plenary session is held at least once a year in person or online. The Plenary is responsible for:

  • Deciding on the general activities of the Consortium;
  • Deciding on the membership in CNES;
  • Electing the Members and the Chair of the Steering Committee and the Members and the Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board;
  • Appointing the Secretariat for a period of 4 years (renewable);
  • Approving of the standards and strategies developed by the Scientific Advisory Board;
  • Deciding on the funding model for the Consortium;
  • Changing the statues.
5.     Steering Committee and its Chair

The Steering Committee consists of 5-9 members including the Chair who are representatives of National Electoral Studies and is responsible for:

  • Organising the plenary meetings;
  • Overseeing the operations and secretariat of CNES, particularly with regard to data harmonization and knowledge-sharing;
  • Finding funding for the Consortium and its activities;
  • Promoting the Consortium also to attract new members;
  • Representing the Consortium in MEDem and possibly other organisations.

The term of office of the members of the Steering Committee is 4 years and may be renewed once.


6.     The Secretariat

The Secretariat shall be responsible for:

  • Facilitating the activities of the Plenary, Steering Committee and Scientific Advisory Board;
  • Maintaining the Consortium’s website, including the organisation and content of the knowledge- sharing platform;
  • Organising data harmonisation and related data documentation of national election study data.

Parts of the operation may be outsourced to other organisations under the supervision of the Secretariat.

A representative of the Secretariat participates ex officio in Steering and Scientific Advisory Board meetings, however without voting rights.

7.     Scientific Advisory Board

The Scientific Advisory Board consists of 5-7 members and is responsible for:

  • Proposing standards and guidelines for data collection (both in terms of methods and pre- or post- harmonised approaches and questionnaires) and on relevant information to be collected and shared by CNES;
  • Providing input to the overall direction and activities of the consortium.

The term of office of the members of the Scientific Advisory Board is 4 years and may be renewed once. Up to 3 members from the Plenary may also be members of the Scientific Advisory Board. Members of the Steering Committee cannot be a member of the Scientific Advisory Board.