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Japanese firm creates blockchain-based e-voting protocol

This project is a part of Tsukuba’s “smart city” initiative

Layer X, a blockchain startup based in Japan, has announced that it is working on an electronic voting system based on a blockchain protocol as part of an overall smart city initiative for Tsukuba City.

The company has explained that the new system will satisfy the technical needs of electronic voting. This includes avoiding instances of double voting, accurately storing all voting content, ensuring voter confidentiality and managing operation records.

It will also allow voters to look at their own voting results, which is an advantage only cryptography can provide thus far to ensure that the recording and aggregation processes for the votes on the blockchain network have been carried out properly.

The startup explained that its new system fulfils its goals of pushing for a shift towards electronic voting in local governments. It also explained that it is developing the capability to strengthen efforts that are aimed at solving technical problems within the digital transformation sphere when it comes to a variety of administrative services.

In addition, Layer X also revealed that it would be joining the Tsukuba City Ibaraki Prefecture smart council, an entity focused on transforming Tsukuba into a “smart city” and ushering it into the digital age.

“We welcome the participation of LayerX Company in the Tsukuba Smart City Council”, a representative from Tsukuba City stated in the announcement by Layer X. The representative explained that this council will work on solving problems in the Tsukuba area and improving urban functions, such as digital robotics.

As part of its efforts to expand alongside its modernisation projects, Layer X has also announced that it is currently looking for software engineers and business development managers.

With the coronavirus pandemic disrupting day to day activities around the world, many countries and local states have turned towards online voting options that are built on the blockchain. This mitigates the risk of transmitting the infection, particularly towards vulnerable groups like the elderly. One country that has already tried experimenting with blockchain-based electronic voting is Russia, and it has also published the source code for the platform on GitHub.

Verneuil-sur-Seine, a French commune, also launched a vote on a road project through a blockchain-based app, and the Michigan Democratic Party also succeeded in an electronic voting experiment through the blockchain-based Voatz platform.

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