[E-voting] e Voting in the UK

Dr J Pelan J.Pelan at gatsby.ucl.ac.uk
Mon May 16 16:09:48 IST 2005

> I work very closely with my local authority ( Blackburn with Darwen
> Borough Council) here in the UK and am also have completed the first
> year of an Msc. in eGovernance, in neither position have I ever heard
> the slightest notion about the UK being hellbent on introducing evoting.

o  The Office of the Deputy PM (ODPM) was a significant player in the 
   Council of Europe's efforts for standards in e-voting. These are not 
   the actions of a disinterested party.

o  ''A spokeswoman for the ODPM said there are not yet any specific details 
   of trial locations or the amount of government funding committed to 
   the project. "Government remains committed to multi-channel e-enabled 
   general elections some time after 2006," she said.''


o  "The Greater London Authority (GLA) is preparing to launch a call for 
   tender for multi-channel electronic voting solutions and/or e-counting 
   systems, with a view to hold electronic elections in 2008 or sooner."

> I think the next big electoral debate in the UK is going to be about
> reform of the voting system i.e. PR - but what form of PR? In light of
> this, I would say evoting won't even make it on to the radar for a few
> years yet.

As a member of the Electoral Reform Society I hope this optimistic view
turns out to be correct, but I have seen and heard more talk of e-voting
from the present government (and MPs) than any mention of voting reform.  
In a recent communication the Electoral Commission confirmed that they
have not as yet been 'invited to review' alternatives to
first-past-the-post but they evidently have been asked for their opinion
on e-voting. In that light, I would recommend keeping our eyes open.

John P.

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