Denmark’s Liberal Alliance may not be a dominant force in Danish politics, but it is miles ahead of the rest of the political world when it comes to technological innovation. In the tiny town of Hvidovre, the local division of the party will be using a new internal voting system based on bitcoin’s blockchain technology to manage voting in their general assembly. (Reddit translation here.)
By adopting the blockchain for voting, members can not only create an accurate voting record, they can also showcase a mechanism for making decisions that is completely transparent and not dependent on any specific authority to approve the results. The system will only be used for internal voting, rather than official government business, but it still marks the first major real-world use of the blockchain concept outside of the cryptocurrency circles.
Party spokesman Mikkel Freltoft Krogsholm explained the benefits in a press release about the decision:
The blockchain removes the need for trust, since the technology can run autonomous without interference from people, and it is at the same time open source and transparent, so that everybody can look under the hood, to take a look at how it functions. It doesn’t get any more liberal – so that’s why it’s an obvious choice for e-elections.”
According to the press release, the Liberal Alliance is the first political party to use the blockchain method to achieve consensus on the local level. Should it prove viable in this and other applications, political parties and other democratic institutions may well move toward blockchain-based system in coming years.