Innovation That Matters

Secure app could enable people to vote from their smartphone


Voatz is a secure voting platform which could enable citizens to vote, use opinion polls and make campaign donations from their smartphone.

There has been a lot of talk about the outdated nature of voting infrastructures. Citizens can now shop, bank and date online, but are still required to visit a polling station in person to participate in democratic votes. Harvard start-up Voatz hopes to change that with their secure, global mobile voting and campaigning platform.

Voatz could enable members of the public to cast their vote, participate in opinion polls and make campaign donations from their smartphone during elections in the not too distant future. Voters would be required to undergo comprehensive identity verification and use a biometric-enabled smartphone in order to participate in the remote, electronic voting. Voatz hope the technology can help to make voting more simple and accessible using familiar technology.

The move could help to entice younger voters, in the US and elsewhere, who are alienated by the traditional ballot box but are used to sharing their opinions and thoughts digitally. Of course, any move to include remote, electronic voting would have to ensure it made voting more accessible to poorer citizens too, and not just those who can afford the latest iPhone.

How else could democratic participation be modernized?



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