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Cloud-based Accessibility for Voting Applications



Shanee T. Dawkins, Sharon J. Laskowski


Since its creation, the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) of the U.S. Department of Education (ED) has supported the development of new technologies for enhancing access for people with disabilities. Current research and development being conducted by the international Global Public Inclusive Infrastructure Consortium (GPII), drawing on work supported by NIDRR, is creating technology for cloud-based accessibility. Using this new technology, users of computer systems can create personal profiles that specify how computer applications should be configured to meet their individual accessibility needs. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) researchers evaluated the applicability of this new technology for two key applications: in voting, and in cloud computing applications being developed by federal agencies. Recognizing the importance of reducing barriers to voting for people with disabilities, NIDRR has long supported research and development in voting accessibility. NIST conducts research on a wide range of issues relating to voting and voting technology, including human factors research on the design and application of voting systems and assistive technologies for voters with disabilities. NIST has developed a prototype voting support system with enhanced accessibility capabilities, based on the cloud-based accessibility work of the GPII. This prototype, the Next Generation Voting Platform (NGVP), is a mobile ballot-marking application designed such that voters have the capability to mark a blank ballot via a customized interface. NIST researchers investigated the use of cloud-based accessibility as applied to voting, and applications of this technology to other domains.
NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR) - 8047
Report Number


Accessibility, Cloud-Based Accessibility, Help America Vote Act (HAVA), Human Factors, Voting Systems


Dawkins, S. and Laskowski, S. (2015), Cloud-based Accessibility for Voting Applications, NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed April 12, 2024)
Created December 22, 2015, Updated November 10, 2018