Electoral administration

Discussion paper

Technology assisted voting review: paper 1 - issues and questions

The NSW Electoral Commissioner is reviewing options for technology-assisted voting in New South Wales. This paper asks a number of questions to stakeholders to inform the review, and to provide assistance in preparing a submission. It also provides a brief context and background for the...

Our regulatory approach

The VEC's role is to ensure all Victorians actively participate in their democracy and to deliver high quality, accessible electoral services with innovation, integrity and independence. This statement aims to provide transparency and predictability in the Commission's compliance responses.

Using individual income tax data in automatic voter registration systems: a state-by-state analysis

This report assesses the effectiveness of using United States income tax data for the purpose of automatic voter registration or re-registration, focusing on the level of match between each state’s standard individual income tax form and its voter registration requirements.

Next-generation technology and electoral democracy: understanding the changing environment

Using case studies from experts in fields such as computer science, law and public policy, this special report offers recommendations to guide policy-makers and stakeholders on how to protect elections from next-generation technologies and the threats they pose to democracy.
Working paper

Federal voter ID laws

This working paper compiles a number of pieces by participants from a seminar to discuss the federal government’s recently announced intentions to enact new voter ID requirements for federal elections—a proposal that raises questions of constitutionality and broader democratic policy.

Report of the Inquiry into the impact of social media on Victorian elections and Victoria’s electoral administration

The approach recommended in this report will need to be regularly reviewed to ensure that it is effective and appropriate. Government funding for research into the impact of social media on elections would assist future policy reviews, as would several of the transparency measures recommended...

Report of the Inquiry on the future conduct of elections operating during times of emergency situations

This inquiry provided the committee with an opportunity to examine Australia’s electoral preparedness during challenging circumstances, and whether there is flexibility within the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 (Electoral Act) to adapt to these challenges.
Policy report

Closest to the people: local government democracy and decision-making in disaster

This policy brief argues that the onset of the pandemic has again demonstrated the resilience and adaptability of local government. In particular regarding its capability to deliver routine and emergency services to communities at this time of particular need.

2019 electoral pocketbook

This Pocketbook includes data on the types of votes cast, formal and informal votes, election funding and financial disclosure at the 2019 federal election.

Voting early, voting often?

Leaving aside errors and misunderstandings, Australia doesn’t have a big fraudulent-voting problem. But a little reassurance wouldn’t go amiss.
Briefing paper

The High Court’s decision on third-party campaign spending

This paper re-caps the events which influenced electoral reforms in 2018, before examining in greater detail the relevant legislative provisions, the concept of implied freedom of political communication under the Constitution, and the reasoning of the High Court in Unions NSW v New South Wales.

Freedom of speech and political communication in Australia

Freedom of speech is fundamental to a free society. Political communication is obviously an important mode of speech and accordingly, the laws and regulations that seek to restrict it are inherently concerning.

Australian Electoral Commission’s procurement of services for the conduct of the 2016 federal election

This audit was conducted to assess whether the Australian Electoral Commission appropriately established and managed the contracts for the transportation of completed ballot papers and the Senate scanning solution for the 2016 federal election.

Voter ID

The question of whether voters should be required to present an acceptable form of identification (ID) when casting a ballot at a federal election has persisted. Executive summary The question of whether voters should be required to present an acceptable form of identification (ID) when...
Audio interview

Fixing the Senate

Senate voting needs to be simpler and more transparent. Brian Costar talks to Peter Clarke about a plan to fix the system, and looks at the politics of the federal budget.

Inquiry into the conduct of the 2010 Victorian state election and matters related thereto

This report examines the 2010 election in Victoria, considering issues such as electronic voting, the integrity of the electoral roll, optional preferential voting and the effectiveness of automatic electoral enrolment.

Was life meant to be easy at the AEC?

The Australian Electoral Commissioner has abruptly changed a long-standing policy, potentially preventing tens of thousands of Australians exercising their right to vote at federal elections, according to Brian Costar and Peter Browne.

A step backwards for democracy

Proposed changes to electoral laws are based on faulty arguments, writes Marian Sawer.

Compulsory voting in Australian national elections

Scott Bennett describes the origins of compulsory voting in Australia and its use in Commonwealth elections, outlines the arguments for and against compulsion, discusses the political impact of compulsory voting and refers to suggested reforms.

Timetable for the next Australian elections

While the calling of an election is partly a matter of political judgement and timing, a constitutional and legislative framework governs the electoral timetables and processes. Rob Lundie outlines the factors governing the dates of the next elections in each state and federally.