Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison has finally called the 2022 federal election for May 21. It has already shown signs of being an ugly fight, with plenty of mud being thrown at both sides, often from within their own parties.

So will it be the end of the nine-year, three-prime minister Coalition government? Or will they hang on for another term?

Morrison and the Coalition will be running hard on their economic record, hoping voters might be wary of switching to a Labor government at a time of great uncertainty around the world. Labor, on the other hand, will be banking on Australians being sick of the Coalition in general, and Morrison in particular. Michelle Grattan examines why the election campaign is likely to be fought on the low political ground.

Kenya is also in the throes of election fever for a poll due in early August. Raila Odinga has four strong showings under his belt and the backing of the incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta, making him look like the front-runner in what is proving to be an intriguing presidential race. David E. Kiwuwa sets out what an Odinga triumph would signal.

How do authoritarian rulers survive in the context of democratic institutions? In studying Uganda, Rebecca Tapscott identified a type of governance that uses unpredictability to combine democratic institutions with authoritarian power. She shows how this fragments and weakens government opposition.

Caroline Southey

Founding Editor

View from The Hill: an election fought on the political low ground

Michelle Grattan, University of Canberra

WIth Australia heading to the polls, this election is a contest between a desperate prime minister and an opposition leader who sometimes looks as though he has been promoted beyond his capability.

Odinga is running his fifth presidential race. Why the outcome means so much for Kenya

David E Kiwuwa, University of Nottingham

Odinga is considered a master strategist, sometimes populist and excellent mobiliser.

How the Ugandan state outsources the use of violence to stay in power

Rebecca Tapscott, Graduate Institute – Institut de hautes études internationales et du développement (IHEID)

Uganda uses unpredictability to combine democratic institutions with authoritarian power.

UN Security Council is powerless to help Ukraine – but it’s working as designed to prevent World War III

Thomas G. Weiss, CUNY Graduate Center

An expert on the history and politics of the UN says that the Security Council’s failure to intervene in Ukraine is a “black eye,” but the panel’s inability to act is not a design flaw.

Ukrainian teens’ voices from the middle of war: ‘You begin to appreciate what was common and boring for you’

Alexander Motyl, Rutgers University - Newark

A group of Ukrainian teens writes about what they will do when the war ends. ‘The first thing that I would do is play the piano. I will play as long as I can,’ writes one.

Ukraine: how forensics teams will investigate evidence of atrocities at Bucha

Jamie Pringle, Keele University; Nicholas Marquez-Grant, Cranfield University

The grisly work of forensic investigators at the scene of a possible war crime.

What is a non-dom? An expert answers our questions about the tax status claimed by Rishi Sunak’s wife and other wealthy people

Ronen Palan, City, University of London

Non-dom status and what it means for the very wealthy, explained.

A history of Easter feasts and why the English breakfast might be medieval

Giles Gasper, Durham University

Many Easter treats hark back to medieval times.

Your forgotten digital footprints could step on your job prospects – here’s how to clean up

Wendy Moncur, University of Strathclyde

Growing up on the internet can bring consequences into adulthood.