# [EM] Testing 1 2 3

Dgamble997 at aol.com Dgamble997 at aol.com
Fri Jan 2 13:57:02 PST 2004

```James Gilmour wrote:

>David Gamble wrote:

>> I would like volunteers to test this model and give their
>> comments on it. If you would like a copy of the model to test

>No test is possible because you have not specified the criteria against
which
>you wish to test the systems.

Basically the idea was to attempt to generate a realistic set of votes (one
where voters vote principally but not entirely on a single ( left-right )
dimension) and then calculate the results under a variety of different methods to
see how they differ. The model can generate other sets of votes based on other
realistic scenarios and also (IMHO) completely unrealistic scenarios. I find
how results differ under different systems interesting, as surely the entire
purpose of reforming an electoral system is to get different and better ( though
what constitutes better is highly subjective) results. You can address a
number of questions using the model not just proportionality of party. For
example:

1/ Does using a good Approval strategy generally elect the Condorcet winner
if there is one? ( answer yes as far as I can tell so far).

2/ is a winning votes cycle resolution method superior to a winning margins
cycle resolution method? ( answer yes ).

By test I meant does it work ?, are the results in people's opinion
realistic?, how could it be improved?

One of the things I hoped to get was people's opinion's on what it should
show if it were working correctly you wrote:

>If your criterion is proportionality of party, all the multi-member systems
will perform >better than any of the single member systems, except by chance.

Yes It shows that

>The degree of deviation in the single-member systems will depend on just how
you >allocate the votes to the single-member districts.

Yes It shows that as well.

>If you want the highest possible degree of proportionality of party, D'Hondt
Highest >Average ( 1 fifty member district) will give a better result than
D'Hondt Highest >Average (5 member districts) or STV (5 member districts).

Yes It shows this also.

>If you maximum voter choice among all candidates, STV (5 member districts)
will >allow that in a way than none of the other systems will. But that feature
will not be >demonstrated in your model.

STV was the most problematic system to model and the one I'm least happy
with.

>Incidentally, I was surprised to see Borda included in your list. Borda is
so
>fundamentally flawed that I don't think anyone will ever use it for public
elections - at >least, I hope not. Whether the flaws will be obvious in your
model will depend on the >datasets you have chosen and on the allocation of

That second preferences count against first preferences under Borda can be
seen virtually whatever data set you put in it. It's flaws, though very
noticeable, are not quite as bad as some people make out. It is in there because some
people ( Donald Saari, Steve Barney) do take it seriously and write books and
papers telling us how good it is.

David Gamble

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