The recent US election as an information system case study

Michael S.H. Heng

Research output: Working paper / PreprintWorking paperProfessional

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This paper adopts an information systems perspective to study the recentAmerican presidential election. The election may be seen as a decision makingprocess to choose the leader to represent the wishes and interests of the people. Thesystem supporting the process is an information system, with information technology,inputs, outputs, users, human operators, procedures, assumptions, and goals. Theinformation system is supposed to serve as an objective instrument to support thedecision making process of political election. But its functioning is deeply embeddedin the political life, with its history, institutions, procedures, norms and strengths andflaws. The output of the system is thus a good enough answer, rather than the mostaccurate answer. All these aspects feature prominently in the recent election. Inaddition, the impasse in Florida reveals several problems; the more important ones are(1) the controversy surrounding voting cards that not clearly punched (2) the use ofoutdated technology, (3) the tension between democratic ideal and legal and politicalexpediency.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherFaculty of Economics and Business Administration, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Publication statusPublished - 2001

Publication series

NameResearch Memorandum


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