The Mexican National Electoral Institute (INE), through its International Centre for Electoral Training and Research (CICE) and the Community of Democracies, held its first International Specialized Training Course: the Use of Technology in the Electoral Processes, in Mexico City from November 10th to 14th.
During the opening session, INE’s President Lorenzo Córdova Vianello welcomed electoral officials from Nigeria, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru, Indonesia, the Philippines, Estonia, Georgia, Lithuania and Ukraine. He spoke about how technology has contributed to strengthen the trust in electoral events, and therefore also strengthen the governance of our political regimes, although he also stated that each country faces specific and different challenges.
According to Córdova Vianello, in Mexico, the INE faces a technological challenge for the country’s electoral processes: building, against the clock, an online accounting system that allows the revision of over 75 thousand income/expenditure reports for electoral pre-campaigns, primary elections, political party campaigns and candidates all over the country, in the previously “unheard of” timeframe of 45 days before the election.
At the round tables, electoral authorities discussed the technical and social implications stemming from use of new technologies for electoral organization and voting results transmission, and identified practices that promote an improvement of procedures and protocols.
In Smartmatic, we know the importance of technology in the optimization of electoral processes. Because of this, we have a unique project management methodology that guarantees the success of projects as massive and complex as elections.
Every phase of an electoral process is important, and that is why we offer consulting services, which include the analysis of the laws, regulations and procedures associated with each country’s electoral process. We evaluate the types of elections and electoral jurisdictions, and we help with the drafting of a legal frame that allows the country to employ electoral automation, which makes their systems efficient and transparent. We use this legal information to configure the election using our Electoral Management System (EMS).
Our EMS software takes care of candidate registration. It also guarantees that the financing of political parties is strictly controlled. Additionally, it provides transparency and efficiency to the tasks associated with the overseeing of the parties running in an election. The software also helps electoral authorities to generate error-free voting ballots, which simplify the voting and the counting.
Smartmatic’s Electoral Management System (EMS) receives and checks electoral data from every single voting machine before counting the votes, showing tendencies and declaring a winner. We also assist the country’s electoral commission in the publication of results, the issuing of credentials and the handling of complains and appeals.
The EMS, together with Election-360, help electoral authorities identify, register and evaluate viable polling stations. Since we are committed to organizing elections that are accessible to all, we also help voters abroad cast their vote. Election-360 also allows the monitoring and organization of the activities carried out by the staff in charge of executing the election.
On the other hand, Maria Leissner, General Secretary of the Community of Democracies, remarked in Mexico that this course aims to find the means to improve democracy in nations, democracy being understood as the citizens’ right to choose their representatives through free and fair elections that have universal and egalitarian access to the vote, an open party system, and secret voting monitored by independent electoral authorities untouched by fraud or intimidation.