Record turnouts for Michaelmas term elections proves the move from paper ballots to online voting has been a success.
Although there were three more candidates than last year, turnout was comparatively higher, with 1,877 votes cast compared to last year’s approximate 1,100.
LSESU Returning Officer Shanti Kelemen stated: “A lot of the candidates ran great campaigns and engaged the student body. They deserve all the credit for increasing voter turnout. I think it’s great that we had so many postgraduates, general course, international, and female candidates, as those groups have been somewhat underrepresented in the past.”
“The SU support staff were a fantastic help. The SU helped a lot with the publicity campaign to recruit candidates and encourage students to vote. They did a tremendous amount of work to test the online voting system and set up polling booths around campus. Having their help in those areas, I was able to focus much more on answering candidates’ questions about campaigning,” Kelemen added.
However, there were two students who were not able to access the online voting system, both postgraduate students who had been undergraduate students at the LSE. Both were given paper ballots which were entered manually onto the system. Kelemen also told the Beaver that there were changes she would like to implement in regards to the online voting system, as students are only able to access it on campus.
The newly elected LSESU Postgraduate Officer Bobby Mills received the most complaints in the past week, as he had emailed societies before campaigning was allowed, as well as links being posted on several Facebook groups. Otherwise, there were no significant breaches of campaigning rules.
“In terms of the switch to complete online voting, I think the turnout demonstrates that it was a success. I did not receive any emails from students complaining about the lack of paper ballots – though, if students do care, I am certainly open to hearing their concerns,” Kelemen said.