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To explore the introduction of a Single Transferable Vote (STV) system in future local elections in Wales as laid out in the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill 2021.

The aims of this research were to assess the relative merits of different variants of Single Transferable Voting (STV) and its implementation.

The report focuses on six aspects of STV electoral systems in detail.

  1. Quota system
  2. Transfer system
  3. Counting method
  4. Ballot structure
  5. District magnitude
  6. Voter and stakeholder understanding

Main findings

  • The simulations found almost no substantive difference in electoral outcomes when either the Droop quota or the Hare quota is used.
  • The research identified two transfer methods suitable for use in local elections using STV in Wales: the Weighted Inclusive Gregory Method and the Simple Gregory Method.
  • There was consensus in both the existing literature and among interviewees that electronic counting was preferable to manual hand counting of ballots.
  • The various options for the ordering of candidates on the ballot paper each have their own knock-on effects.

The consensus in both the literature and among interviewees was that providing five or more members per ward is preferable as it leads to more proportional electoral outcomes.


Implementation of a Single Transferable Vote system for local elections in Wales , file type: PDF, file size: 991 KB

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Nerys Owens

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Rydym yn croesawu galwadau a gohebiaeth yn Gymraeg / We welcome calls and correspondence in Welsh.


Telephone: 0300 025 8099

Rydym yn croesawu galwadau yn Gymraeg / We welcome calls in Welsh.