# [EM] Multi-winner Approval (was Re: New Hugo (Science Fiction Award) voting method)

Jameson Quinn jameson.quinn at gmail.com
Mon Aug 31 23:13:30 PDT 2015

```For one thing, EPH isn't about electing representatives who have votes.
It's about choosing finalists for a prize.

So, the system you describe has good points. But it also has weaknesses:

1. Strong incentive to bullet vote.
2. Could elect some winners much weaker than others.
3. Hard to calculate/find winner.

2015-08-31 23:38 GMT-04:00 Michael Rouse <mrouse1 at mrouse.com>:

> I am not sure why my previous post didn't have a right margin, so I will
> retype it.
>
> *What about a system where the five candidates appearing on largest number
> of unique Approval ballots go on to final round of voting? If a bloc of
> voters choose candidates {A, B, C, D, E}, and no other voters do, then only
> the top candidate in that group would go on. It would allow a wide breadth
> of options in the final round, rather than a set of novels that appeal to
> just one unified group.*
>
> *If there is more that one possible set with the same number of unique
> ballots, just pick the one with the highest total number of Approval votes.
> It would be single-stage elimination for the first stage, and fairly simple
> to explain.*
>
> Which brought to mind a multi-winner proportional version.
>
> 1. For a number of seats previously decided upon, allow each voter to cast
> a ballot approving as many (or as few) candidates as they wish.
>
> 2. Looking at each possible set of the required number of candidates,
> choose the group appearing on the greatest number of unique ballots.
>
> 3. If there is more than one group that satisfies the criteria in 2,
> choose the group with the greatest total number of Approval votes. (Further
> tiebreakers can be added, too.)
>
> 4. Discard candidates not in the winning group. Looking at each ballot,
> divide a single vote/point/whatever equally among the remaining candidates.
>
> 5. Add up each candidate's score from these points and fractions of a
> point.
>
> 6. In the legislature, each person has a voting power proportional to
> their score.
>
> This or something similar may have already proposed by someone, of course,
> but I would love to see what good and bad qualities it might have.  (Good
> might be simplicity, bad might be encouraging block voting or something,
> though I am not sure about that.)
>
> Now it is getting late, and I am getting tired. I probably mangled
> something or messed up somewhere. :)
>
> Mike
>
> On 8/31/2015 1:11 PM, mrouse1 at mrouse.com wrote:
>
> What about a system where the five candidates appearing on largest number of *unique* Approval ballots go on to final round of voting? If a bloc of voters choose candidates {A, B, C, D, E}, and no other voters do, then only the top candidate in that group would go on. It would allow a wide breadth of options in the final round, rather than a set of novels that appeal to just one unified group.
>
> If there is more that one possible set with the same number of unique ballots, just pick the one with the highest total number of Approval votes. It would be single-stage elimination for the first stage, and fairly simple to explain.
>
> Mike
>
>
> On 2015-08-26 18:43, Jameson Quinn wrote:
> > Yes, I was the designer of this system, and I was there at Worldcon to
> > get it passed.
> >
> > What was needed was a proportional system based on approval ballots.
> > There are of course a number of options in this vein. Within these
> > limitations, this system was designed for:
> >
> > -Relative simplicity of explanation. I found that explaining STV-like
> > systems which are top-down and so require keeping track of how "used
> > up" a ballot is were too hard to explain.
> > -Resistance to "bullet voting" strategy, since widespread use of such
> > strategy would weaken the non-slate voters against slate voters.
> >
> > It is like IRV in that it is a bottom-up elimination system. However,
> > it was in no way "based on" IRV, and in fact it differs in one key
> > regard: it looks at the whole of each ballot from step one, instead of
> > ignoring all but one of the choices on each ballot at any given time.
> >
> > I'd be happy to answer any further questions about it here.
> >
> > Jameson
> >
> > 2015-08-24 13:22 GMT-04:00 <mrouse1 at mrouse.com> <mrouse1 at mrouse.com>:
> >
> >> That would be awesome -- there are too many emails over there to
> >> read in one sitting! :)
> >> Mike
> >>
> >> On 2015-08-24 10:49, Andy Jennings wrote:
> >>
> >> Jameson Quinn, who's on this list, was working with the Hugo awards
> >> to
> >> come up with this system.
> >>
> >> I believe he proposed simple systems first, but several wrinkles
> >> came
> >> up which necessitated the complexity.
> >>
> >> I'll email him and see if I can get him to chime in here.
> >>
> >> On Mon, Aug 24, 2015 at 8:29 AM, <mrouse1 at mrouse.com> <mrouse1 at mrouse.com> wrote:
> >>
> >> As an addendum, they are calling this method “single divisible
> >> vote with least popular elimination," which I haven't heard of
> >> before.
> >>
> >> Mike
> >>
> >> On 2015-08-24 04:06, Kristofer Munsterhjelm wrote:
> >> On 08/24/2015 02:27 AM, Michael Rouse wrote:
> >>
> >> I'm not sure how many people here are fans of science fiction, but
> >> there
> >> was a big brouhaha at this years awards (which I'll ignore), and
> >> one of
> >> the results was the proposal of a new method of choosing winners:
> >>
> >> *Short Title: E Pluribus Hugo (Out of the Many, a Hugo)*
> >> Moved, to amend section 3.8 (Tallying of Nominations), section 3.9
> >> as
> >> follows:
> >>
> >> [snip]
> >>
> >> So this is basically cumulative voting IRV? I suppose it's better
> >> than
> >> ordinary IRV, but if they're using an Approval ballot, why not just
> >> use
> >> Approval to begin with?
> >>
> >> Do they want a proportional representation method or a majoritarian
> >> one?
> >> The reference to avoiding slates seem to suggest to me that they
> >> want a
> >> proportional representation method, or at least something that is
> >> closer
> >> to a PR method.
> >>
> >> As a positional elimination method, it could suffer path
> >> dependence.
> >> Consider someone nominating (voting for) X, Y, and Z. Say now that
> >> Y is
> >> very narrowly eliminated at some point, but if the person had voted
> >> for
> >> X and Y alone, he would have given enough of his vote to Y to have
> >> kept
> >> Y from being eliminated. So the claim that "[i]n other words, you
> >> can
> >> safely nominate anything you feel is Hugo-worthy" doesn't seem to
> >> be
> >> strictly true. You can safely nominate anything that is relatively
> >> unpopular, but if it gets popular enough, it may draw enough
> >> support
> >> away from the others you would also like to nominate.
> >>
> >> If I were to construct a majoritarian ballot system with Approval
> >> ballots, I would just use Approval. There's a similar "drawing away
> >> from
> >> other popular candidates" problem (the chicken/Burr thing), but
> >> Approval
> >> is much simpler and doesn't repeated iteration.
> >>
> >> For PR, the question is much harder. With computers, you could use
> >> PAV,
> >> sequential PAV or birational voting. However, the non-sequential
> >> ones
> >> require a lot of recounts and are probably not feasible for manual
> >> elections. Sequential ones are simpler but the proportionality
> >> might not
> >> be obvious.
> >>
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