Norwegian county conducts referendum using online voting

United States - February 22, 2022 - The county of Innlandet in Norway held a referendum using an online voting system provided by the Smartmatic-Cybernetica Centre of Excellence for Internet Voting (SCCEIV).

Voting ran smoothly with turnout reaching 47%. Official results were announced a few hours after polls closed. Citizens could cast their ballot from anywhere, at any time during a two-week voting period. Voters 16 and up were asked to weigh in on whether or not the county should remain united or be split in two separate counties: Hedmark and Oppland.

This was the second time a Norwegian county used TIVI, the remote voting system developed by the SCCEIV in Estonia. In 2018, Finnmark, Norway’s northernmost county, also used this online voting solution for a referendum vote. TIVI has been employed in elections in Utah (USA), Chile, and Benin.

With a low population density of 14 people per square kilometer - among the lowest in Europe - and an internet penetration of 95% (as per Statista), Norway is well positioned to reap the benefits of online voting. The Electoral Integrity Project (EIP) has consistently ranked Norway among the best countries for elections. EIP is an academic research project based at Harvard and Sydney universities.

The Smartmatic-Cybernetica Centre of Excellence for Internet Voting was created in 2014 to study and develop internet voting on a global scale. In 2018, the European Commission awarded the SCCEIV a research award under the Horizon 2020 Programme to advance the development of cryptographic protocols for privacy and security within the context of distributed ledger technology.