Borda Count

Borda Count
What is Borda Count
All about Borda Count, how it works and the pros and cons

Borda Count

Where is Borda Count used?

• Used for the election of two ethnic-minority members of the National Assembly of Slovenia.
• The Parliament of Nauru.
• Presidential elections in Kiribati.
• Various private organisations and awards, such as the NBA's Most Valuable Player award and the Eurovision Song Contest.

How does Borda Count work?

The Borda Count is a form of preferential voting in single member constituencies where voters rank candidates in order of preference and the rankings are converted into points.

Candidates score one point for being ranked last, two for being next-to-last and so on. The candidate who receives the most points is declared the winner.


The Pros and cons of Borda Count

The case for

The arguments against

The Borda Count shares the advantages of other preferential voting systems such as the Alternative Vote and the Single Transferable Vote, in that all MPs would have the support of a majority of their voters.

It encourages a strategic approach by parties to nominations. An extra candidate increases the cardinal number of points in the system and alters the relativities between other candidates. A minority faction, by standing more candidates, can increase its chances of prevailing over a majority.

It tends to elect broadly acceptable candidates, rather than those supported by the majority.

It encourages tactical voting to an even greater extent than First Past the Post as in Borda Counts your expression of lower preferences can harm your first choice.

Voting Systems

Proportional Representation Mixed Systems Majoritarian Systems
More representative as seats are distributed according to vote share. Combines the features of majoritarian-style systems and Proportional Representation. Systems that are highly disproportional.
Single Transferable Vote Additional Member System First Past the Post
Party List PR Alternative Vote Plus Alternative Vote
    Borda Count
    Block Vote
    Limited Vote
    Supplementary Vote
    Two-Round System