Wednesday, January 10, 2024

2024: A Record-Setting Year in Democracy and Technology

In a watershed moment for democracy, the year 2024 is set to witness an unprecedented scale of electoral participation, with at least 64 countries—including all 27 member states of the European Union—poised to conduct national elections.

This democratic spectacle is projected to engage approximately 49% of the global population, highlighting the sheer magnitude of the citizenry that will exercise their voting rights.

Of particular note, the most populous nations on the planet—India, the United States, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, and Mexico—are scheduled to hold pivotal elections that could shape the geopolitical landscape for the foreseeable future.

Technology, too, is slated to leave an indelible impact, as close to half of the electorate will utilize electronic voting machines to cast their ballots, signifying a significant inclusion of modern technology in the democratic process.

The United States commands the spotlight with its comprehensive suite of elections slated for November 5. The American populace will determine their next president while simultaneously voting for the entirety of the House of Representatives and one-third of the Senate. The presidential election is particularly charged with echoes of 2020, as incumbent Democrat Joe Biden is anticipated to once again stand against Republican Donald Trump in what can be seen as a sequential political duel.

India, the world’s most populated country, will hold elections for the Lok Sabha, known as the House of the People. With a vast population of 1.44 billion, a substantial portion of which comprises eligible voters, India's the largest democracy in the world. The procedural undertaking of such an event is colossal, necessitating an extensive deployment of electronic voting machines to ensure a smooth and efficient voting process.

With the shifting winds of political power, the outcomes of these elections carry profound implications for international relations, especially in regions marred by conflict, such as Gaza and Ukraine.

The year 2024 will, therefore, not only be remembered for the historic voter turnout but also for the impact of these elections on the unfolding of global events and the balance of power that influences them.