Australia Election Study Tour

By Keli Yen

During the 2013 Australian Federal elections, the Australian Greens International Development Committee (AG-IDC) held an electoral study tour program for Greens from the Asia-Pacific Greens Federation to participate in the Australian Greens’ election campaign and voting system in Perth and Sydney.  Study tour participants included Bernadette Rounds Ganilau from Fiji, Rior Santos from the Philippines, Dorothy Tekwie from Papua New Guinea, Henry Zimbo from the Solomon Islands, Liaquat Ali Sheikh from Pakistan and Keli Yen from Taiwan.  My study tour was hosted by the Greens in Perth.

I was amazed by the Greens’ organization, passion and team spirit. I saw candidates speaking with the public everyday every hour.  I observed countless Greens volunteers campaigning on the streets and at their computers explaining why voting for the Greens means standing up for what matters.  I continue to feel inspired by the joy, commitment and hard work that Greens put into the election.  And I heard Greens speaking with sincere respect for their candidate Senator Scott Ludlum, whom they tell me had won their hearts because he speaks from his heart and walks the talk.

The Australian Greens’ progressive policies are a wonderful model for other Green Parties around the world.  Take a look at these rigorous & impessive policy papers:

And more, on sustainable housing, water, digital rights, climate resilience, food securityeducation, environment, and social care.

The best part of this learning journey were the priceless friendships formed that support our long-term and global collaboration.  Through conversations I learned how to talk about Green politics in a way that connects environmental and social justice issues and people’s daily life.  I learned about Australia’s preferential voting system and was given a special tour of the Parliament House by Greens Parliamentarian Robyn Chapple.  

Participants in this electoral study tour are bringing home some great ideas for our parties and the Asia-Pacific Greens Federation.  Stay tuned to the APGF for useful improvements such as a library for Greens around the world to share campaign materials, and briefs of each Green Party’s policies and candidates.  

I return home to Taiwan proud to be a Green, inspired by a practical vision of a sustainable future, and energized to stand up for what matters and make it happen!


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