This paper presents details of a web-based, database-oriented ‘‘electronic voting service’’.
Rapid world-wide growth in Internet and Web use has stimulated many initiatives aimed at
applying information and communication innovations to create what has been called a
‘‘digital’’ or ‘‘electronic democracy’’. Internet voting is already widespread in a variety of
forms, some serious, most not. A new set of opportunities is offered to facilitate closer links
among citizens, between citizens and politicians and direct democratic participation through
online voting and interactive polling. Local government decision-making procedures can be
enhanced by the application of a electronic voting service to evaluate citizens responses to
certain issues and to canvass the possible solutions they have in mind.
The main characteristics of this electronic voting service were developed on the basis of
strong lengthy experience of and a good deal of consultation with local authorities. This interaction
revealed a demand for an easy to use (for novice users) and administer tool, low cost
with a minimum set of security mechanisms, but still able to provide valid results. The systems
services were planned and implemented to be easily expandable. The application is based on
state-of-the-art software platform, integrating WWW and database. The system aims to become
a pilot for implementing efforts to support on line voting procedures. The service provides
the capability to create a questionnaire/poll, view the subject and participate in the
voting procedure. Only authorised users can use the system to vote or create a questionnaire.
All users can view results from previous voting procedures.