The 2002 Help America Vote Act gave NIST a key role in helping to realize nationwide improvements in election technology. We led the development of the Voluntary Voting Systems Guidelines (VVSG) for the Election Assistance Commission through the Technical Guidelines Development Committee (TGDC). VVSG 2.0 was finalized in 2020. NIST also develops implementation guides to help the voting community develop new systems to meet VVSG and researches topics to help build the voting systems of the future.
The projects and research section provides links for all our major projects in the following areas:
NIST works closely with two partner agencies: the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) and the CISA Election Infrastructure Security organization. The EAC is the lead agency for elections. They promulgate standards, provide a testing a certification service and provide a broad range of guidance documents across the entirety of election infrastructure. CISA is the lead for operational security for elections and provides a range of security services and guidance documents.
NIST works closely with the election community to develop standards, implementation guides and research new voting topics. If you are interested in working with us, please read the pages for your area and email us. Note that we love to work with students!
Additional information about HAVA and NIST’s role in elections (going back to 1975) is available on our history page. The EAC also has information about elections going back to HAVA, when they were created.