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Polyas Election Glossary
We provide explanations and background information on elections, voting rights and digital democracy
The term absentee voting means voting from a place other than the poll site.
Abstaned vote is a form of exercising of the voting right, by which the voter voters neither for or against the motion in question.
Act of Parliament
An Act of Parliament is a piece of primary legislation which has been passed into law by Parliament.
An association's bylaws are essentially the constitution of the association.
Associations are organizations whose members share a common interest or work towards the same goal.
Authentication is the process and result of verification. Online voting is only possible for authenticated voters.
Ballot Box Election
The ballot box election is a classic form of attendance voting where voting takes place directly at the polling place.
The ballot paper is a card with which eligible voters excercise their voting right
Bill of Rights
The Bill of Rights are the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution
A block checksum ensures the safe transfer and storage of ballots in an online election
Brokered conventions occur when no candidate receives a majority in the primaries.
BSI - Federal Ministry for Security in Information Technology
The BSI is responsible for IT security in higher federal administraion, and has a main seat in Bonn
The introduction and implementation of BSI standards is important for the functioning of IT risk management. The standards allow testing IT security and obtaining an IT security certificate.
By-elections are held to fill vacancies which arise before the end of the legislative term.
Bylaws comprise of contractual specifications which substantiate legal regulations of a corporation, association, cooperative and other institutions.
Caucus is part of the primary election process where party members vote for their preferred Presidential candidate.
Cloture is a procedure used in the U.S. Senate to end stalling debates
Common Criteria are internationally recognised security standards for the testing and assessment of IT products.
A constituency is a geographically defined area in which voters elect a representative to a legislative body such as a parliament.
Cooperatives are member organizations which share a common interest and are owned by the members
In a council vote, the members of an employee representation body are elected in the public sector.
Credit unions are financial co-operatives which are owned by their members.
Cumulative voting allows voters to cast several votes for one candidate in an election.
D'Hondt Highest Averages Method
In a proportional representation system, the number of votes won by each party needs to be translated into seats. The D'Hondt-method is one way of allocating seats amongst parties.
The production of security copies for the purposes of re-establishing data in case of data loss
Protection of the private sphere in the face of illegal usage of your personal data
Data security gives a level to which data is protected against unauthorised access, damage and accidental losses.
A digital key consists of random strings, which combined with an algorithm convert data in a coded text.
Digital Single Market
Digital Single Market stands for a strategy for strengthening digital economy within the EU.
In direct elections single persons are elected in an certain administrative body.
Early voting occurs when voters can cast their vote before the official election day.
During an election campaign, candidates or parties compete for votes.
An election is a democratic procedure through which one or more persons are chosen as executives or representatives in certain bodies.
E-voting means voters can cast their vote electronically
Filibuster is a tactic used by minorities in the U.S. Senate to stall parliamentary decisions by prolonging debates.
First Past the Post
First past the post is the electoral system which is used in UK and U.S. elections.
George Pólya was a mathematician and is the namesake of Polyas.
Hard money is a donation or contribution made directly to a specific political candidate.
The Hare-Niemeyer method is a mathematical method to calculate the allocation of seats in a proportional representation election.
In-house elections is a classic form of direct vote casting in a poll site. There is also the option of in-house voting with voting devices.
Internet elections (also: internet voting) comprise of various forms of electronic elections where the ballot paper is filled out digitally.
An invalid vote is a cast vote which is considered void.
IT Risk Management
IT risk management describes a catalogue of security measures from the BSI, for the purposes of protecting IT systems against various hazzards.
IT-Security means the confidentiality, integrity and availability of IT systems.
Labor unions are the representation of a body of workers who band together in order to protect their interests and rights through collective bargaining.
Laws come about in an intended constitutional legislative process due to an act of will by the legislation organs of a state.
A legal rule is an official, abstract and general directive, which substantiates legal regulations.
The legislative term is the period of time for which an elected official holds office.
In a list election several candidates are elected together 'en bloc' from the so-called election lists.
Majority vote is an election system in which a candidate with the majority of votes wins the elections.
Mutuals are member organizations which operate for the benefit of their members and provide services to them.
Net neutrality is a concept that Internet service providers have to treat all data equally.
Online polling describes a digital decision-making process
An online election is a legal election with vote casting over the Internet, free from space and time constraints.
Panachage allows voters to allocate their votes to candidates across different party lists.
Parliamentary sovereignty means that parliament is superior to the executive and judicial branches of government
Polls allow decision-making through vote casting
A polling card (also known as a poll card) provides information about the logistics of how and where people can vote in an election or referendum.
A polling place is a physical location where people go to cast their vote during an election
A form of long-distance voting, not dependent on place or time of the ballot
The Presidential election process is a complex process to elect the President of the United States.
Primaries are conducted to select a candidate within a party, especially in the Presidential election.
The Prime Minister in the UK is the head of government and the most powerful member of the core executive.
Proportional representation e is an election system where the seats are allocated to the proportion of the votes cast according to determined methods.
Proxy voting means having someone else cast your vote for you.
Regulations are legal norms, issued by the executives.
Regulatory colleges are legal, governing bodies which regulate the practice of a particular profession.
A resolution is a decision an organization makes to take a particular course of action.
Safe Harbour was a decision made by the EU Commission in order to protect personal data transfer in the USA.
Single Transferable Vote
Single transferable vote (STV) is a electoral system in which seats are allocated to candidates in order to achieve proportional representation, and where each candidate is ranked in order of preference by voters.
Soft money is a donation or contribution made to a political party.
Staff council is the term for for works councils in public institutions.
Tactical voting refers to the practice of voting for a candidate that is not one's favorite in order to prevent a less desirable candidate from winning.
Voter turnout shows the percentage of eligible voters who actually cast a vote.
Electronic voting machines are special devices which are created for the electronic voting and elections used in the polling station.
The Webster or Sainte-Laguë/Schepers method is used to calculate the allocation of seats in an election.