Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Russian Company Mixes Software with Politics in new E-voting Platform

A Russian software design company, Project Ventures, plans to sell its new e-voting platform service to European municipalities at a cost of 1 euro ($1.36) per voter, per year. "We have developed and will soon start selling a DDaaS (digital democracy as a service) solution," said Leonid Volkov, the founder of Projector Ventures and co-author of "Cloud Democracy," a foundation book on the use of IT in politics.  DDaaS was first used during the election to the Opposition Coordination Council in Russia, an “alternative government” created by opposition leaders in October 2012, and was used later in small elections in Yekaterinburg, Voronezh and Zhukovsky, and in the alternative online voting in the presidential election in Iran in June 2013.  According to Volkov,  a typical European municipality (with a population of 5,000 to 10,000) is Project Venture's target customer.  He adds that "[a] general election makes it easy to decide on important matters — where to put a new bus stop, or build a new nursery school or a new bypass. For other issues, there are local councils, 10 to12 councilors, each representing 200 to 300 voters. Every councilor needs feedback, it is the so-called principle of delegation, which our system supports, too."

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