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Smartmatic Conference at the International Electoral Affairs Symposium 2011


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Organising PR Campaigns and Civil Education Campaigns, conference given by Cesar Flores, President of Smartmatic Asia at the International Electoral Affairs Symposium 2011

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Smartmatic Conference at the International Electoral Affairs Symposium 2011

  1. 1. Organising PR Campaigns and Civil Education Campaigns <ul><li>Cesar Flores Zavarce </li></ul><ul><li>President – Smartmatic Asia </li></ul>
  2. 2. <ul><li>Successful project implementation relies on properly stimulating participation and overcoming resistance to change. </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>6 Important FACTS about Turnout, Technology and Resistance </li></ul><ul><li>Motivation is by far the biggest factor involving participation. (What is being elected and the trends/forecast for said election). </li></ul><ul><li>Voting habits are formed young and influenced by previous generations. </li></ul><ul><li>Attitudes that stimulate voter turnout develop more easily in relatively small political environments where community relations are closer and more direct. Efforts led by locals are more effective in encouraging voter turnout. </li></ul><ul><li>Someone who votes in one election is more likely to vote in the next election. </li></ul><ul><li>Someone who skips an election is less likely to vote in the future. </li></ul><ul><li>Individuals and societies resist change. Technology brings change. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Challenges when implementing a new voting system </li></ul><ul><li>Some people might find a new technology confusing and therefore not vote, but such an effect could disappear as soon as they become familiar with the new system. </li></ul><ul><li>If the voting system does not resemble the traditional voting experience, there will likely be more resistance. </li></ul><ul><li>The introduction of a new way of voting must be accompanied by a new communication campaign that has to be broader than the usual campaigns </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Aggressive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multimedia </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Adapted to the cultural environment </li></ul></ul><ul><li>If an electronic system is not used throughout a whole country or a whole electoral area, or if it is not standardized, overcoming any possible resistance, it’s going to be more difficult to stimulate participation. </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>How technology stimulate voter participation </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitating the act of voting (electronic voting system can display each candidate's photograph, can enlarge the font size, etc.). </li></ul><ul><li>Promoting equality of electoral access (efforts to ensure ease of voting for the disabled, illiterate and visually impaired voters). </li></ul><ul><li>Guaranteeing accuracy. </li></ul><ul><li>Ensuring faster results. </li></ul><ul><li>Creates confidence because is auditable. </li></ul><ul><li>New technologies are appealing for young/middle-aged people. </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Success experiences </li></ul><ul><li>INDIA . The Indian Election Commission ensured success through massive training and awareness campaigns. The innovations are an 'unqualified success' and have been well received by parties, candidates and staff, according to the Indian Government. More than 95 per cent of the voters welcomed the use of EVMs in 1999 (Centre for the Study of Developing Societies 1999). </li></ul><ul><li>THE PHILIPPINES. The social pollster Social Weather Stations (SWS) revealed that 75% of Filipino voters were “very satisfied” with the conduct, speed and credibility of the election. For first time in Philippine history, COMELEC could offer an initial report less than two hours after the polls closed. An astounding 76% voter turnout was achieved </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>PR and Voting Education in </li></ul><ul><li>The Philippines in 2010 </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Situation before the voter education campaign began </li></ul><ul><li>Outdated system. No standardized ballots , simple blank ballots for write-ins were the norm. Complicated consolidation rules. Results would take weeks </li></ul><ul><li>Fraud was endemic. Hundreds of protests filed and strong allegations of fraud </li></ul><ul><li>High participation rates in the past. Turnout between 70% and 80% </li></ul><ul><li>Very young population. Millions of first time voters </li></ul><ul><li>Low awareness. Information was not easily available, many misconceptions </li></ul><ul><li>Negative Political Situation. The new voting system had few but powerful opponents, who spread misinformation. This was threatening participation </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>Strategy of the Voting Education Campaign </li></ul><ul><li>Involvement of all stakeholder. </li></ul><ul><li>Uniformed message . Practical voting instructions highlighting ease of use </li></ul><ul><li>All media. Aggressive campaign through all media (printed, radio, tv, internet) </li></ul><ul><li>Localized presentation and training tours. Covering local communities, regional leaders, NGO’s and minorities </li></ul><ul><li>New media to stimulate younger voters. Social networks, cartoons, twitter </li></ul><ul><li>Integrating efforts from different sources. Materials produced by different groups would be also integrated into the campaign </li></ul><ul><li>Targeted to address Cultural values. Materials to the Pilipino culture </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Uniformed Message: </li></ul><ul><li>Campaign Slogan: It’s better automated </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>Easy Voting Instructions consistently repeated in all materials </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>New Media Approach in The Philippines 2010 Election </li></ul><ul><li>Voter Education Website </li></ul><ul><li>New Voters Social Site </li></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>TV and Radio Ads adapted to local culture </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>Thank you! </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>