Members, Candidates, Primaries
There are two parts of bringing UVI to life: the tech and the go-to-market (GTM). UVI is the product and it needs to then find its place in the market – what is termed as the product-market fit. Let us first start by defining the key features of the product, and we will then discuss how it can find the early adopters, and then cross the chasm to the mainstream.
UVI is a two-sided marketplace – connecting voters and candidates. The purpose of UVI is to enable those voters not committed to voting for a specific party to choose their own candidate in a transparent process. This needs to happen in every voting unit. UVI thus is a manifestation of a DAO (decentralised autonomous organisation). There is no one leader or small collective at the top deciding who the candidate should be. For this, the rules need to be simple and easily understood by all.
UVI will have members. Any eligible Indian with a VoterID can become a member. Each member has one vote, and will need to be authenticated by someone else. A member must agree to a set of basic terms at the time of joining. Members can be incentivised via “tokens” to recruit other members and do other actions which help UVI. These tokens can give extra influence when it comes to policy decisions. However, when it comes to voting for candidate selection, the principle of one person one vote must apply.
Candidates are selected via a primary. Any member can contest in a primary. There should be an “entry fee” paid in the form of tokens. The entry fee can vary as per the election (local, state, national). The entry fee ensures there is a cost for contesting and thus ensures only serious contenders (those with an interest in public service) contest the election. The primary can be in two parts: the first phase to bring the candidates to 3, 5 or 7 (for local, state and national elections, respectively), followed by a second phase which uses ranked choice voting to ensure the winning candidate gets at least 50%+1 of the votes. All voting is done digitally and recorded on the blockchain. Think of the voting as the equivalent of a digital transaction.
The winner of the primary process gets to contest the election as a UVI-supported candidate. Note that the entire process is transparent and does not require any arbitrary decisions. The UVI software does the magic. It is open-source so anyone interested can see the underlying logic. The UVI contestant will hopefully get votes on election day from the members. If the membership in the voting region is large enough (in excess of 20%) and all the members go out to vote in the election, the UVI candidate has an excellent chance of winning. Repeat across every constituency and we can have a Lok Sabha, Vidhan Sabha or municipal corporation of UVI-backed independents.