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SGO

Themes

SGO works in a number of different areas, which can be grouped into the following themes. The research we do and the solutions we develop in one area are inspired and aided by our work in the others. Over the coming months we will be announcing a series of new ventures under each theme.

Democracy and citizen participation

Democracy and citizen participation

Smartmatic has electronically counted over 3,7 billion votes in thousands of elections
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Governance

Governance

Governments are well behind the private sector in terms of the use of technology solutions
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Identity and Privacy

Identity and Privacy

As the world moves online, issues of privacy and proving identity become central to the relationship between citizens
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Climate and clean air

Climate and clean air

Air pollution in many cities across the world is now at levels that puts their citizen’s health significantly at risk
Read more

Democracy and citizen participation

Democracy and citizen participation

Smartmatic has helped hundreds of millions of voters cast over 3.7 billion ballots in thousands of government elections around the world. Better use of technology in voting systems increases not only the transparency, efficiency and integrity of an election but also makes voting more accessible, allowing societies to reverse declining trends in turnout and citizen participation.

We work with electoral commissions in all stages of the electoral cycle. We help with polling location management and the biometric identification and registration of voters, through touch screen electronic voting to the electronic tabulation of voting and post-election auditing.

What makes our electoral work unique is the quality of process and service on the ground, in polling stations and election commission offices, which ensures that what is often a new system can win the confidence of all stakeholders in the election - from the voter themselves, to international observers, to even the losing parties in the election. We custom-build technological solutions to support our customers’ electoral process, so they can serve citizens in ways consistent with their requirements, their geographic, cultural and social needs and the surrounding legal framework.

We are continuing to bring our ground-breaking approach to new countries every year and we are ardent promoters of the benefits of polling booth election automation. But we are also looking beyond that and beyond the traditional timelines and election cycles of representative democracy.

We think that the world is moving toward a more participatory model of democracy where in addition to periodic elections there will and should be a more continuous flow of opinions between citizens and governments.

SGO is actively working in a range of new areas, from Internet voting to online platforms for citizen consultations and petitions, which we believe can enable and catalyse this transition.

For more information, visit us at www.smartmatic.com 

Governance

Governance

A former European leader recently commented that ‘the challenge of western democracy is always presented as one of transparency and accountability; in fact, it is one of efficacy’. Our governments are simply not as effective as we wish. We believe that a large contributor to government inefficiency is poor use of technology.

In particular, there is a large missed opportunity in using the proliferation of data and information at all levels of government - both to cooperate better across departments and to centralise that data in a way that empowers the executive to make better decisions.

For the latter the ability to structure and aggregate data more effectively, rather than receiving a slew of reports and presentations, would provide an immensely powerful dashboard to manage government better.

Secondly, cross-ministry or departmental cooperation is often held back by concerns over data privacy and security. Our governments simply do not have the means to exchange information in a secure, transactional environment. Consider, for example, the process that takes place when different government departments request information from each other, regarding an individual citizen. In the absence of a secure query-based system for sharing information, departments end up either not sharing the information or sharing far too much, in an insecure manner, compromising the privacy of that individual and possibly others.

Our contributions and innovation in this area will be announced soon.

Identity and Privacy

Identity and Privacy

As commerce, communication and government services have increasingly moved online, issues of privacy and proving identity become central to the relationship between citizens.

Individuals must assert their identity when accounts are created, when they are accessed or when they are transacting. Yet each of these three processes can be inconveniencing to the individual and lead to unnecessary disclosure of personal information beyond what is needed to prove identity. Today significant fraud is prevalent, affecting consumers and businesses alike.

SGO has conducted extensive research and made significant investments to overcome this problem by providing users with a secure and trustworthy way to prove their identity online in a way that enables them protect third- party access to their personal, private information.

Our contributions and innovation in this area will be announced soon.

Climate and Clean Air

Air pollution in many cities across the world is now at levels that put their citizens’ health significantly at risk. The need to clean this polluted air is one of the most important problems facing our cities today.

  • In new estimates released, the World Health Organization reports that in 2012 around 7 million people died – one in eight of total global deaths – as a result of air pollution exposure.

  • In Beijing, lung cancer has risen 60% in the last decade, despite smoking falling.

  • Over 8% of deaths in central London are attributed to particulate air pollution.

  • Carbon Soot is 1000x more “warming” to the atmosphere than CO2.

  • Record PM2.5 levels of almost 40x the level regarded safe to human health were recorded in Beijing during 2013.

SGO has conducted significant research and made strategic investments to tackle the problem of polluted air in cities, factories and work places.

Our contributions and innovation in this area will be announced soon.