Voting Technology: The Not-So-Simple ACT of Casting a Ballot

Voting Technology: The Not-So-Simple ACT of Casting a Ballot

by Paul S. Herrnson, Richard G. Niemi, Michael J. Hanmer, Benjamin B. Bederson
     
 

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Voting difficulties hung over America's presidential election in 2000 like a dark cloud. Passage of the Help America Vote Act in 2002 sparked further interest in the physical act of casting a vote, leading to a number of technological innovations. Voting Technology is the first book to investigate in a scientific and authoritative manner how voters respond toSee more details below

Overview

Voting difficulties hung over America's presidential election in 2000 like a dark cloud. Passage of the Help America Vote Act in 2002 sparked further interest in the physical act of casting a vote, leading to a number of technological innovations. Voting Technology is the first book to investigate in a scientific and authoritative manner how voters respond to the new equipment.

An interdisciplinary group, the authors synthesize their work in American politics, campaigns, human and computer interaction, and human factors. They employ their collective expertise in evaluating five commercially available voting systems, each one representing a specific class based on shared design principles, as well as one prototype system not currently available. They evaluate each system according to key criteria such as accuracy, speed, and ease of use. The results reveal the good and bad about the systems, including specific features that contribute to greater clarity as well as those leading to confusion and error.

The concluding chapter of Voting Technology pulls together best practices that will guide voting-system manufacturers, ballot designers, election officials, political analysts, and voters. In a political system based on free and informed exercise of personal choice, the least we can do is make sure those choices are being correctly cast and accurately recorded and counted.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"[An] excellent study of usability and voting technology. This study is the most comprehensive analysis of voting machine usability to date, and it offers a new look into how the characteristics of voting machines affect the output of human-voting machine interactions." — Review of Policy Research

"This study of a very important but long neglected facet of elections is original in its scope and methodology. The authors' findings must be taken seriously by those who design voting systems, construct ballot formats, draft election legislation, or administer elections." —Richard G. Smolka, Election Law Journal

"The book is a must-read for anyone seriously interested in researching elections and the legitimacy they confer or not to rulers, as well as for policymakers." — Journal of Politics

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780815735632
Publisher:
Brookings Institution Press
Publication date:
12/28/2007
Pages:
208
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

What People are saying about this

Paul DeGregorio
"Well written, well documented, and fascinating. Too little research has been done in the area of voting systems, even though it clearly affects all Americans. Voting Technology is a 'must read' for anyone interested in this important topic."--(Paul DeGregorio, former chairman, U.S. Election Assistance Commission and current chief operating officer of Everybody Counts, Inc.)
Henry Brady
"It seems as if everybody talks about voting technology, but nobody seems to do anything about learning how to improve it-until this new volume. Finally, we have a book that does serious research on voting technology so that we can make it better."--(Henry Brady, University of California-Berkeley)
Ray Martinez
"Voting Technology is an extremely significant book, with findings I have not seen in any other publication. It is easy to read, and the conclusions are compelling. This is exactly the kind of research that the U.S. Election Assistance Commission should be pursuing. Election administrators around the country should read it."--(Ray Martinez, Rice University, former EAC commissioner)
R. Michael Alvarez
"In the aftermath of the 2000 Florida recount, it became clear that academic research on voting technologies had been inadequate. This book pushes the research frontier forward substantially and provides the foundation for a new generation of research on voting technologies and election administration."--(R. Michael Alvarez, California Institute of Technology, coauthor of Point, Click, and Vote: The Future of Internet Voting)

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