Data and Democracy

The UK’s electoral systems are undergoing a stress test of a sort that they have rarely experienced. On one hand, innovations such as online deliberation present an opportunity to open up policy making. On the other, political actors are using personal data to make conflicting promises to discrete demographics – with no accountability or consent. These practices can help, or hinder, the ability of elections to be free and fair in the digital age.

Open Rights Group’s Data and Democracy project seeks to mitigate these threats and prevent new technology from eroding public trust in the democratic process. To achieve this we aim to influence debate, conduct research, mobilise supporters and develop principles to shape the ethical use of these technologies.

Click here for our latest blog post on how Covid-19 can make or break digital democracy.



Want to know what political parties think about you?

Find out here.

What data do political parties hold on you?

Online, political parties want to be your best friend. In reality, they don’t know you at all.

Who do they think you are? Click here.


Demos and ORG have teamed up on an exciting new project.

Watch this space…

The Story So Far

Bigger than Cambridge Analytica

ORG’s view on the ICO’s personal data and political campaigns investigation.
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Hot Take: the Russia Report and Elections

Amongst the many revelations in the Russia report, a battle is playing out for the future regulatory landscape of UK elections.
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Winners, losers, and unanswered questions

In their report released on Monday the House of Lords’ Democracy and Digital Technologies Select Committee produced a comprehensive overview of problems it considers to be of high importance to a functioning democracy.
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Political parties: listen to your members

ORG’s Data and Democracy Project has been working for over a year to limit the use of personal data by political parties.
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Democracy and Covid-19

The Covid 19 epidemic has disrupted our economic and social life unlike anything seen in peacetime.
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Imprints: who’s responsible?

Many proposed electoral reforms are highly contested.
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We need political accountability more than ever- and the ICO can lead the way

We are living in an unprecedented historical moment.
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APPG on Electoral Campaigning Transparency adopt ORG reforms

Last summer, Open Rights Group gave oral evidence to the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Electoral Campaigning Transparency.
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Profiling, Political opinions, and Data Protection – The Legal Background

We’re campaigning to stop political parties abusing personal data in their rush to try and win elections.
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Out for the count : the £9 million white elephant in London’s next election

Electronic counting in London – the subject of criticism from the Electoral Commission and Open Rights Group for many years – is now spiralling in cost.
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Hunting for a solution? If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it

It seems apt that it was at this week’s ‘digital hustings’ for the Conservative Party leadership that Jeremy Hunt unilaterally came out in favour of online voting.
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