Electoral Commission Report on the 2017 General Election

The Electoral Commission’s final report on the delivery of the 2017 General Election was presented to Parliament on 18 April 2018.

The full report can be downloaded under the summary below.

For 2017, the Commission focused on:

  • putting voting places where people live, work and congregate,
  • providing a one-stop shop with a comprehensive enrolment service in voting places, and 
  • engaging communities to encourage participation.

At the front of the report, 2017 election facts and figures are available at a glance.

Part 1 of the report sets out the key features of the General Election, including:

  • increased voter turnout, 
  • increased enrolment after Writ Day and in voting places,
  • increased overseas, advance and special votes, 
  • more accessible voting place locations, including malls and supermarkets,
  • encouraging participation with community engagement, information and advertising,
  • the official results process, and
  • compliance with campaign rules.

Future operational priorities are identified including using technology to encourage people to enrol and vote and to provide accessible services for disabled voters, and improving participation for Māori, Asian, Pasifika, young and Auckland voters. 

Part 2 of the report sets out matters that need to be considered for future elections. Recommendations include:

  • streamlining the special vote process to reduce the impact of the growth of special votes on the timeliness of election results,
  • providing a more accessible online enrolment option to reduce late enrolment,
  • removing restrictions on voting place locations, and
  • addressing barriers that affect voters on the unpublished roll, remote and disabled voters.

As well as matters relating to the conduct of elections, the report contains recommendations on wider policy questions and the health of the electoral system. Our recommendations cover matters such as the Māori Electoral Option, MMP issues, protecting the system against unauthorised interference, funding of elections, a fixed election date, access to rolls, prisoner voting and broadcasting and campaign rules. A summary of recommendations is available at pages 4 to 8.

The Commission has already begun a programme of work on operational priorities for ongoing enrolment and the delivery of the 2020 General Election. Where legislative changes are required to give effect to recommendations, we want to work closely with Ministers, Parliament and other agencies to progress them.


Last updated: 18 April 2018