A global organisation of election bodies led by ECI proposes the necessity for benchmarks for technology firms.

This week, a group of election management bodies (EMBs) that convened at a meeting hosted by the Election Commission of India (ECI) in Delhi resolved to submit an “internal industry benchmark” for digital businesses during elections to the United States-led Summit for Democracy in March.

According to the ECI’s report summarising the proceedings of the conference on Monday and Tuesday, one of the conference’s follow-ups was that the EMBs “through this cohort may outline some core elements of a comprehensive strategy that can establish some sort of ‘internal industry benchmark’, related to tech companies and elections integrity, in order to make a coherent recommendation as a shared expectation from the Summit for Democracy.”

The summit, the second in a series, is slated for March 29-30, and virtual participation is anticipated from heads of state and government. In December 2021, Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the first summit. Prior to the second summit, the ECI, Greece, Mauritius, and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems were selected to co-lead the election integrity cohort.

According to the election authority, the ECI has hosted two conferences preceding the summit, which will be followed by a virtual conference in the second week of March. Representatives from Angola, Armenia, Argentina, Australia, Chile, Croatia, Fiji, Georgia, Indonesia, Kiribati, Mauritius, Nepal, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, and Suriname, as well as officials from the foreign missions of Costa Rica, Philippines, Serbia, Cape Verde, Palau, Jamaica, Ghana, and Paraguay, discussed the use of technology in elections and its challenges at the second conference held this week in New Delhi.

“Despite all the obstacles that technology poses, EMBs and EAs have little choice but to adopt them. According to the ECI’s summary report, the focus should be on “suitable technology” rather than a mindless chase of high technology.

The EMBs at the conference proposed that safeguarding the independence of EMBs and electoral authority would be among the group’s proposals to the summit.

Countering disinformation would be another potential recommendation. “Challenge of disinformation and the urgent need to have a solution to this challenge, even though laced with criticism with free speech argument, ought to be red-flagged without hesitation to the Summit”

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Hi, my name is Nisha and I'm an educational journalist based in India. I've always been passionate about the power of education to transform lives, and that's what led me to pursue a career in journalism focused on this area. I completed my Bachelor's degree in English from Hindu College in Delhi in 2013 and then went on to earn my Master's in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Mass Communication in 2017. During my studies, I also completed several short-term courses on Education in India, Sociology, and other related subjects to deepen my knowledge in this field. I'm particularly interested in improving access to quality education in rural areas, where students often face significant challenges. I've worked on a number of initiatives to address this issue, including advocating for better policies, resources, and practices that can make a difference. As an educational journalist, I'm passionate about using my platform to highlight important issues in the education space. I've covered a wide range of topics, including the impact of technology in the classroom, innovative approaches to teaching and learning, and the challenges facing students from marginalized communities. One of the things I love most about my work is the opportunity to constantly learn and grow. I'm an avid reader and believe that reading is key to expanding one's knowledge and perspective. I'm always seeking out new ideas and insights to help me better understand the world around me. In summary, as an educational journalist, I'm dedicated to using my skills and expertise to make a positive impact in the field of education. I'm committed to improving access to quality education for all students and to using my platform to raise awareness about important issues in this area.

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