The UK Electoral Commission issued a report today noting that the lessons that can be learned through election pilots have been learned and that now the government needs to decide what reforms should be implemented more broadly.
The Commission is recommending:
- No more pilots of electronic voting without a system of individual voter registration. There also needs to be further consideration of its wider implications and significant improvements to testing and implementation.
- No further pilots of electronic counting, and more robust procurement and testing processes when electronic counting is used in future elections.
- That the government makes a decision whether to allow voting in advance of polling day – further pilots are unnecessary
- That the government publishes a strategy for modernising the electoral process – including changes to improve security
- That the value of signing for ballot papers is limited in the absence of individual registration
Peter Wardle, Chief Executive of the Electoral Commission, said: “We have learnt a good deal from pilots over the past few years. But we do not see any merit in continuing with small-scale, piecemeal piloting where similar innovations are explored each year without sufficient planning and implementation time, and in the absence of any clear direction, or likelihood of new insights.