ICTs in Elections Database

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About the Database

Please note that we are working on the migration of our databases. Therefore, data for some countries may be incorrect. 

Thank you for your patience as we continue to improve our databases. 

One of the most compelling concerns election practitioners face today is how to make use of the unique opportunities presented by the development of modern information and communication technologies (ICTs). ICTs can help to speed up and streamline several procedures in the electoral cycle, such as voter registration, casting the vote, processing of results and many other processes. However, technologies can also create complex challenges to election operations. When ICTs are correctly used, based on well-identified needs and the adoption of a proper implementation strategy, the outcome can be very beneficial.

Some countries use ICTs effectively to improve electoral processes, but others face problems. The most cited causes of failure in ICT use include unrealistic expectations of ICTs to meet demands, adoption of inappropriate technologies, and lack of qualified staff to work with ICTs.

In order to help election practitioners and stakeholders to better understand the use of ICTs in elections, International IDEA has conducted a global comparative study to learn how ICTs are being used in several stages of electoral process. The main purpose was to document the global patterns of usage of ICTs in elections, the problems and challenges countries are facing, and the types of technologies being used. The study led to the development of an online database, which presents the comparative data in an interactive way.

The database consists of five parts covering the use of ICTs in the following areas:

if users note that the database has missing data, or if they find data that is incorrect, misses sources or requires more explanation, users can use the edit icon next to the data or click on the data in the preview window, and fill in the “Edit data” form. International IDEA will review the submission as soon as possible and update the database if the data suggested is correct.

For more information about the database contact: Peter Wolf, Technical Manager (p.wolf) and Abdurashid Solijonov, Programme Officer (a.solijonov)

1. Voter registration and identification
2. E-voting
3. Processing of results
4. Use of open source technology in election administration
5. Online data publication by electoral management bodies (EMBs)

METHODOLOGY

Voter registration and identification explores the use of ICTs in voter registration and identification procedures, including biometric data. The questions apply to national elections only, such as elections for the legislature or executive offices, as well as direct democracy initiatives.

E-voting focuses on the use of ICTs in casting and recording of votes – commonly referred to as “electronic voting” (e-voting). The questions in this part apply to national as well as sub-national elections, such as national elections for the legislature or executive offices and sub-national elections for regional legislative body or regional executive offices, as well as direct democracy initiatives.

Processing of results maps out the use of technology in the processing of election results – i.e. counting and tabulation of votes. The focus is on the use of computerized systems for processing and transmission of results, from polling station level to the central electoral management bodies. The questions apply to national elections only, such as elections for the legislature or executive offices and direct democracy initiatives.

The use of open source data in election administration highlights the use of open source software and technology in all stages of election administration and specifically national elections.

Online data publication by EMBs provides comparative data on the use of internet to publish key elections-related data such as election results, voter registration, candidate/party registration and political finance.

International IDEA’s Electoral Processes Programme (EPP) will regularly update the ICTs in Elections Database. EPP also will conduct periodic global studies to expand the content of the database. In addition, International IDEA invites researchers and practitioners working in the area of elections to contribute to the update of this database.

FAQ

The database was created by International IDEA to store, update and analyze data from more than 10 years of research. The community is encouraged to use the information and help us to improve existing entries and keep the database up to date.
The data has been collected by International IDEA and its partners during previous and ongoing projects. We are now encouraging the community to assist in the maintenance of the data, but will approve all submissions and check accuracy and sources wherever possible.
Most pages showing data include an edit icon that will take you to an edit page. Here you can edit the current data, add new data for a different year or simply add a comment, link or an additional source.
To make sure that real people are editing data, we require a valid email address. The first time you make an edit from a computer, we send a verification email that then stores a special code in a cookie. Any other edits you make from that computer are connected to that same email address.
Each of the thematic pages has a list of example queries that cover common searches of interest. You can also choose to select all countries and all fields to view and export all the data for that theme. Currently there is no option to export all the data from the entire database at once.

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