New technologies are used to strengthen political participation by the population and businesses
Switzerland sees new technologies as an opportunity for democracy. Digitalisation can contribute to broader political participation on the part of the population and groups in civil society. The main task of the state is to prepare and make available to the public the data necessary for ICT applications in the political arena (Civic-Tech applications). In addition, it must guarantee the basic regulatory and institutional conditions so that political participants, civil society and private enterprises can take advantage of digitalisation in the political sphere. The basic regulatory and institutional conditions must also serve to prevent or correct undesirable developments. In addition, digital access to its archived documents also ensures that the Confederation’s documents can be consulted at any time and regardless of location.
The digitalisation of political rights in the narrower sense (electronic voting, e-collecting) is continuing in accordance with the byword of “security before speed”. ICT applications in this area must be secure and trustworthy. The task of the state is to define the relevant essential requirements and to ensure they are met. The effects of the new participatory channels on democratic decision-making must be examined and risks which threaten confidence in majority decisions must be tackled promptly. Adequate consideration is given to full accessibility as early as the commencement of technical developments: full accessibility of digital products and services must permit equal-opportunity access to the exercising of the political rights of people with disabilities.