Norway

Articles about voting issues in the Kingdom of Norway.

Norway: Governments should consider the consequences when they decide whether to adopt Internet voting | Democratic Audit

The secret ballot is largely undisputed as a democratic principle. What this principle means in practice, however, may be contested when voting takes place outside the polling station in a so-called uncontrolled environment, i.e., remote voting including Internet voting, postal voting and telephone voting. Remote voting transfers the responsibility for vote secrecy from the authorities to the voters. The popular understanding of the principle of the secret ballot, therefore, becomes crucial, because this may influence whether voters actually keep their vote secret. The secrecy of the vote has two aspects. First, it requires that voters are able to cast their votes in private, unobserved by anyone. Second, it requires that no one is able to break the anonymity of the vote at a later stage. Even though both aspects are important, we focus on the former. Voter attitudes towards the privacy aspect have received little attention in the literature on remote voting. The secrecy of the vote is usually taken for granted, and questions about this issue are therefore rarely asked in surveys. Read More

Norway: Anti-immigrant party set for worst election result in 22 years | Reuters

An anti-immigration party in Norway’s coalition government headed for its worst election result in 22 years in a local vote on Monday after its opposition to Syrian refugees put it out of step with many voters. The right-wing Progress Party had 9.7 percent with 87 percent of the votes counted, against 16.3 percent in a parliamentary vote in 2013. It was Progress’ worst election since receiving 6.3 percent of the vote in 1993. The election was also a blow to the Conservative Party, the senior partner in the two-party government which came to office in 2013 and has struggled with falling prices of oil, Norway’s main export, and rising unemployment. The Conservatives’ share fell to 22.4 percent, down 5.6 percentage points from four years ago as voters swung left. Read More

Norway: Local elections test welcome for Syrian refugees | Reuters

Norway’s anti-immigration Progress Party may be facing its worst election result in 20 years in municipal voting on Monday as its hostility to Syrian refugees leaves it out of step with a more welcoming mood in the Nordic nation in the last month or so. Progress has sought to turn the municipal election into a vote on a plan it opposes to take in 8,000 Syrian refugees by the end of 2017, arguing that locally elected politicians could simply refuse to accept refugees. The two parties in the right-wing minority government, the Conservatives and Progress, have also lost ground since 2013 parliamentary elections after tax cuts that have mainly benefited the rich. Read More

Norway: Internet voting experiment fails | ZDNet

The Norwegian Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation has put an end to a pilot project allowing voting on the internet. The main reasons cited are a lack of increase in turnout amid concern that the program could damage confidence in the electoral process. A study performed by the Ministry of the test programs run in their 2011 and 2013 elections shows many conflicting results but, at bottom, the benefits were too slight and the problems too great. Only a summary of the Ministry’s study is available in English. The full study is in Norwegian (PDF). One interesting result was evidence that a small number of voters, 0.75% of all voters, voted twice in 2013. They voted once online and once by conventional paper ballot at a polling station. At the same time, convinced that it is necessary in order to increase disappointing voter participation rates, officials in the US and UK still are pushing for internet voting. As I explained several weeks ago, in the US voting over the internet is creeping in from the bottom up with no real thought being put into the process. Read More

Norway: E-voting experiments end in Norway amid security fears | BBC

Norway is ending trials of e-voting systems used in national and local elections. Experiments with voting via the net were carried out during elections held in 2011 and 2013. But the trials have ended because, said the government, voters’ fears about their votes becoming public could undermine democratic processes. Political controversy and the fact that the trials did not boost turnout also led to the experiment ending. In a statement, Norway’s Office of Modernisation said it was ending the experiments following discussions in the nation’s parliament about efforts to update voting systems.  The statement said although there was “broad political desire” to let people vote via the net, the poor results from the last two experiments had convinced the government to stop spending money on more trials.

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Norway: Norway Does A Ctrl+Alt+Delete On E-Voting Experiment | NPR

After a two-year trial for Internet voting, Norway is pulling the plug. The country’s Office of Modernization said in a statement that there’s no evidence that online voting, tested in elections in 2011 and 2013, improved turnout. It also said that “political disagreement” over the issue, along with voters’ fear that ballots might not be secure, could undermine the democratic process. The office said it had “decided that the attempt with voting over the Internet should not be promoted.” The idea of online voting has been in the ether for as long as the Internet, so Norway’s experience might be relevant elsewhere. … David Jefferson, a computer scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, wrote in 2011 that “computer and network security experts are virtually unanimous in pointing out that online voting is an exceedingly dangerous threat to the integrity of U.S. elections. “There is no way to guarantee that the security, privacy, and transparency requirements for elections can all be met with any practical technology in the foreseeable future,” he says. Read More

Norway: Vote early, vote often: Inside Norway’s pioneering open source e-voting trials | ZDNet

With Norway holding parliamentary elections this week, the country has taken the opportunity to hold its second e-voting pilot. The pilot follows an earlier trial which took place during the local government elections in 2011. According to statistics released by the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development, the ministry responsible for running elections in Norway, the e-voting participation increased significantly compared to 2011. The trial was carried out in 12 municipalities, chosen for geographical and demographical diversity, which play home to 250,000 of Norway’s 3.6 million voters. … Even though the e-voting system with security front and centre, it still has attracted some criticism from security professionals. The first and most discussed issue were concerns raised over the encryption used in the pilot. The encryption software on the voters’ computers was thought to not have a good enough random number seed for the algorithm and, according to the security company Computas which was engaged by the government to control the system, the seed value was “very predictable”. Read More

Norway: Opposition set for sweeping election victory | Reuters

Norway’s center-right opposition, pledging privatization, tax cuts and smaller government, was set for a sweeping election win on Monday but faces difficult coalition talks since a populist anti-immigration party will hold the balance of power. Norway has enjoyed rare economic success, thanks to its flourishing offshore oil sector boosting per capita GDP to $100,000. But growth is slowing and voters are ready to punish Labour Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, accusing him of wasting a once-in-a-lifetime economic boom. “To me, this vote is about using our fortunes better,” Oslo voter Geir Henriksen, 36, said. “Public service, like health and elderly care, is not getting any better even as the government spends more and more. We need to rebalance government.” Labour could still end up as the biggest party with 30 percent, opinion polls show, but that will not be enough. The four center-right parties, led by likely future prime minister Erna Solberg’s Conservatives, are on course for around 100 seats in parliament, 15 more than needed for a majority. Read More

Norway: OSCE monitors Norway parliamentary elections | The Foreigner

2013 is the second General Election year this will be done. Their presence is by official invitation from the Government of Norway. It is also based on the findings and conclusions of a Needs Assessment Mission (NAM), conducted between 4 to 6 June. The OSCE/ODIHR (Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights)-deployed Election Assessment Mission (EAM) is headed by American Peter Eicher. Other foreign core team members are election analyst Goran Petrov (former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia), and Lisa Klein, a legal and campaign finance analyst from the UK. Sweden’s David Bismark, a new voting technologies analyist, and Yuri Ozerov (procurement and contracting officer, Russia), make up the final two foreign NAM team members. In particular, the election observers will investigate aspects related to the Internet voting pilot project. Read More

Norway: Prime minister runs out of road in election race | Financial Times

It seemed a perfectly-timed stunt from Jens Stoltenberg. The Norwegian prime minister, lagging behind opposition parties ahead of parliamentary elections next month, pretended to be a taxi driver around Oslo, demonstrating his charm to ordinary voters. But then things started to go wrong. It transpired some of his passengers had been paid to make the journey while the whole thing had been dreamt up by Try Advertising, the governing Labour party’s ad agency. Worst of all, one of his passengers complained his bad driving had worsened her back problems. As Mr Stoltenberg said: “I think the country and Norwegian taxi passengers are best served if I am the prime minister and not a taxi driver.” Read More