At SURHUL, the Student’s Union of Royal Holloway, University of London, we have a problem. I’m sure it’s not an uncommon one, particularly at student’s unions.
Our electoral system is essentially a popularity contest. Manifestos, campaigning and student outreach have very little impact on the results. Many positions are uncontested and whoever runs wins by virtue of being the candidate who is running; people assume that this means that they care about the position enough to run, and that’s enough for them.
I don’t think this is a good way to run elections, and it’s not something that should be encouraged. But it’s something that can be very easily fixed, or at least I think so.